The bell shrieks through the hallways and students pile out of their classrooms heading to their favorite time of the day. It’s lunch time and people are expecting a mediocre meal because the cafeteria food is deemed inedible. With thorough investigation, this “rubber”, a reiterated term spoken throughout the school, may not be as horrible as it seems.
When asked about the quality of the food, Margie Charney, a cafeteria staff member replied, “There are many options, but the majority of people aren’t taking the healthy option. I can’t force you, so it comes down to your choice.”
In other words, she means that the amount of options aren’t the issue, and it is the students who make the unwise decisions when ordering their food. In addition, she also added that the majority of the way the food is prepared isn’t unhealthy, which excludes all oil from the preparation process. Margie didn’t fail to mention that the produce is fresh and new supply comes every week from U.S Foods, a well-known distributor. Although the food is nutritional according to Margie Charney, questions were still raised whether the taste is up to par. During the period when she was questioned, she stated that there was an adequate amount of choices and never once mentioned the flavor of the food. This raised questions for students who voiced their distaste for the cafeteria food. The point is: who is going to eat the nutritious food if it doesn’t taste good?
Moreover, most student opinions differ with the cafeteria staff members’ remarks. One student Maggie Czupich voiced, “When I buy lunch, I only buy packaged foods because I don’t trust the food and it doesn’t taste good.”Another claimed that Margie Charney’s statement of the food being fresh was false. According to a sophomore Hannah Mui at New Hope-Solebury, “The produce is definitely not fresh, and fresh produce should be brought daily to increase the quality.” She among the others who were questioned also voiced their dislike for the flavor of the food. Lastly, Katie Steele, a New Hope-Solebury freshman expressed her opinion saying, “ The options do not differ, it is basically the same everyday.” Regardless of the wide range of opinions, it is a fact that cafeteria food does need improvement. It may be nutritional according the cafeteria staff, but it lacks in taste according to most students. Whether lacking in the freshness of the produce, the quality of the food, or even the overall flavor, it is evident that the school truly cares about the service and is willing to improve these faults.
Speaking of improvements, our cafeteria is currently following the Pennsylvania guidelines and as these change, the offerings will change as well. The first lady, Michelle Obama has also taken initiative to increase the nutritional value of school lunches and these changes will be evident as time progresses. As a result of these initiatives, Margie Charney predicts the commonly bought ice cream, pretzels, and other unhealthy options to decrease as these guidelines change. This is very important because as childhood obesity rises and the amount of students buying lunches coincides with this, it is critical to keep the student body healthy. In conclusion, the school lunches may not be gourmet, but they do contain valuable nutrients. As Hippocrates once said “ Our food should be our medicine and our medicine should be our food,” and this should apply to the food we are being served everyday in our cafeteria.