Thousands of School Foodservice
Professionals to Meet in Minneapolis
ALEXANDRIA, Va., June 28, 2002 – An estimated 6-7,000 attendees including exhibiting companies will travel to Minneapolis in July for the American School Foodservice Association’s (ASFSA) 56th Annual National Conference. The event takes place from Sunday July 21 to Wednesday July 24.
This year’s theme is “School Nutrition: Dish It Up," and highlighting the event will be keynote addresses by Ed McMahon, one of the most recognized men in broadcast media, Senator Paul Wellstone, the senior senator from Minnesota and Ron Clark, a sixth grade teacher from Harlem, New York, voted Teacher of the Year in 2000.
Individuals attending the conference, mainly school foodservice directors and their staff from school districts across the United States, will attend more than 100 education sessions in seven topic areas: Administration, Human Resources, Leadership, Nutrition, Operations, Outreach and Marketing, and Technology. Among the noteworthy sessions scheduled are
“School Nutrition: Dish It Up" will offer many additional activities for those in attendance: the largest exhibit hall in the industry, culinary demonstrations, the ASFSA Marketplace and a gala awards presentation. In addition, attendees will have the opportunity to earn continuing education units and take the School Foodservice & Nutrition Specialist (SFNS) Credentialing exam.
Other outstanding events, such as the Evening of Entertainment featuring Three Dog Night, and the Farewell Event at the Mall of America's Camp Snoopy, will attract thousands of participants.
The general sessions, educational sessions and exhibit hall are open free of charge to working press who wish to cover the conference for their publications. To obtain a press registration from contact Jan Stanton at 703-739-3900 ext. 149, or firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on ASFSA’s Annual National Conference, please visit see Related Links.
Child Nutrition Foundation Awards
Academic Scholarships and Research Grants
ALEXANDRIA, Va., June 3, 2002 – The Child Nutrition Foundation Financial Aid Committee recently awarded 56 Schwan’s Food Service Scholarships (undergraduate level and above) to eligible members of the American School Food Service Association (ASFSA) and their dependents. In addition, nine Child Nutrition Foundation Professional Growth Scholarships (graduate level) awards were made. Both scholarships will be used for the 2002/2003 academic year.
Schwan’s Food Service Scholarships are funded by a generous grant from Schwan’s Food Service. Professional Growth Scholarships are funded through proceeds raised at the Child Nutrition Foundation’s annual Silent Auction and “Chippin’ for Children” Golf Tournament, as well as a contribution from Lakeside Manufacturing.
Additionally, the Foundation was pleased to award seven Heinz Foodservice Scholarships. Heinz USA generously donates a percentage of school foodservice ketchup sales to support the Heinz Scholarship.
The complete listings of scholarship recipients can be found in Related Links.
The Child Nutrition Foundation also awarded two research grants: the Lincoln Foodservice Award for Innovations in Child Nutrition and the Hubert Humphrey Research Grant. Each grant, valued at $2,500, is provided by Lincoln Foodservice Products, Inc.
The Hubert Humphrey Research Grant recipients are Jerry Cater and Denise Brown from the University of Southern Mississippi for their proposal on, “A comparison of school foodservice administrators’ and after school care program coordinators’ perceptions of the importance of accountability requirements when implementing the National School Lunch Program snack service.” The Lincoln Foodservice Award for Innovations in School Foodservice recipients are Laurel Lambert from the University of Idaho and Deborah Carr from the University of Southern Mississippi for their proposal on “Perceptions, practices, and barriers of school foodservice directors, elementary school teachers, and elementary school principals in providing nutrition education to students.”
The Child Nutrition Foundation wishes to express thanks and appreciation to the companies that make the financial aid programs possible: Schwan’s Food Service, Heinz USA, Lincoln Foodservice Products, Lakeside Manufacturing, and ConAgra as well as those ASFSA members who supported the golf tournament and silent auction. For more information on the Foundation's academic assistance programs, please see Related Links.
The Child Nutrition Foundation, established in 1964, is a non-profit corporation that provides high-quality professional development, financial aid and research programs to child nutrition professionals and members of the American School Food Service Association (ASFSA). The Foundation’s commitment to the child nutrition community is integral to implementing positive change in school meals and, ultimately, to the health of school children.
USDA Announces Additional Funding
for School Community Kitchens
ALEXANDRIA, Va., May 22, 2002 – The Honorable Eric Bost, Under Secretary of Agriculture for the Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Services of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), announced today that the USDA will provide the Child Nutrition Foundation with $444,265 to further develop the School Community Kitchens Initiative.
The School Community Kitchens project provides food to people in need while training low-income individuals for placement in school foodservice positions. The initiative began two years ago with pilot sites in Massachusetts, Wisconsin and Florida. Under Secretary Bost made the announcement while touring the kitchen at Miami Northwestern Senior High School in Miami-Dade County Public Schools, one of three pilot School Community Kitchens.
The three-year continuation of the project will provide seed money and both print and Web-based resources to school districts interested in developing School Community Kitchens. “We are excited to be able to expand the School Community Kitchens project beyond the pilot stage to eighteen new communities,” said Marcia Smith, president of ASFSA. “The impact of the new sites will be measurable in the lives that are changed in communities across the nation.
The program is a partnership between the Child Nutrition Foundation, USDA, and D.C. Central Kitchen, which pioneered the community kitchen concept. New School Community Kitchens can benefit from three pilot models, a How-To Guide and other resources available on the ASFSA Web site. See Related Links to access these new resources. The three pilot projects employed individuals in child nutrition and foodservice positions, served over 8,000 meals to children and adults, and resulted in new community partnerships. Over 30 graduates of the program found employment in foodservice jobs.
Over 500 Become Credentialed as School
Foodservice and Nutrition Specialists
ALEXANDRIA, Va., (May 6, 2002) – According to the American School Food Service Association (ASFSA) over 500 individuals have now earned the designation of School Foodservice and Nutrition Specialist (SFNS).
The credentialing program that was begun by ASFSA in January of 1999 requires that school foodservice professionals fulfill academic requirements, have work experience in the field, participate in specialized training and pass a national exam.
Marcia Smith, president of ASFSA, states, “The SFNS credential recognizes professionalism in school foodservice. Many of our members run school district programs with budgets in the ten of millions of dollars and manage hundreds of employees.” She continues, “Our credential communicates to others a level of knowledge and expertise in the profession.”
The credentialing program is being recognized among school officials who hire and manage school foodservice programs. Job placement ads sometimes include the SFNS credential as a requirement for the position. In some school districts employees receive an increase in salary once they become credentialed. In Virginia Beach, VA, the school board approved a $1,000 annual foodservice credentialing bonus for any employee who achieves SFNS status.
See Related Links for more information on the ASFSA Credentialing Program.
National Food Drive Will Help
Alleviate Hunger This Summer
ALEXANDRIA, Va., (April 2, 2002) – When Florida school foodservice director Marcia Smith envisions a food drive, she doesn't limit her sights to a single school or neighborhood. As this year's president of the American School Food Service Association (ASFSA), Smith is spearheading a nationwide food drive in April with the help of 55,000 other ASFSA members. Although the drive is a national effort, the "Sharing with Communities We Serve" campaign will benefit local food banks and charities.
Smith actually conceived the idea last year, but the urgency for such an effort took hold last fall after she discovered that donations to local charities were down in the wake of the Sept. 11 tragedies. At that time many individuals and corporations focused their giving on national relief funds. Even before Sept. 11, food banks across the country have struggled to keep up with demand. According to a report by the U.S. Conference of Mayors, requests for emergency food assistance increased in 1999 by an average of 17% in American cities, with more than 60% of requests coming from families with children.
As a part of the “Sharing with Communities We Serve” campaign, school children across the nation will collect food for other children. "The goal of the food drive is to collect food specifically for children who do not have access to school meal programs during the summer," said Smith. “This is a time of year when food banks have additional needs for serving children who are out of school.” In particular, donations will help children who rely on school lunch and breakfast programs for a majority of their nutritional needs during the school year. During summer months, food banks tend to run low as the food donated during the holiday season begins to run out.
"Never has the need been more important," said Smith. "This is a rewarding way for us to give back to the communities we serve." Locally, schools will be conducting one-day, one-week or longer food drives in April. In Smith’s district 100 schools will participate in the food drive. The district school that collects the most food will have the opportunity to send a group of students and staff to a special ceremony at their food warehouse on Wednesday, April 24.
With its network of 52 state affiliates, hundreds of local chapters and 55,000 members, ASFSA reaches communities and schools throughout the United States. Before the end of her term, Smith will have the honor of announcing the total amount of food collected nationally during a special presentation at ASFSA's annual conference in Minneapolis in July.
ASFSA members can find out more information on the Food Drive in the Members Only section of this site.
Protecting School Employees Against Hepatitis A
ALEXANDRIA, Va., March 26, 2002 – The discovery of a Hepatitis A infected food handler can trigger alarm among supervisors, executives and health officials. Hepatitis A is passed person to person but can also spread through contaminated food and water. Over 180,000 people are infected with this liver disease each year. In most cases, food handlers are infected outside of work and not as a result of specific occupational hazards. However, knowing the facts about Hepatitis A and how it can be prevented is the best defense against an outbreak.
Sue McCarroll, APRN, BCP will preside over the American School Food Service Association's online chat on the topic of Hepatitis A on Thursday, March 28 at 4pm EST at http://www.asfsa.org. McCarroll, Coordinator of Health Services for Aurora Public Schools (CO), will discuss the threat of Hepatitis A in the school environment and respond to questions about implementing a district-wide Hepatitis A prevention program.
McCarroll is an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse as well as a Certified School Nurse Practitioner. In 1992, McCarroll received a Master’s degree in Counseling and Human Services. McCarroll has been recognized numerous times for her leadership in the health profession most recently as a nominee for the 2001 Colorado School Nurse Administrator of the Year. She is an active member of National Association of School Nurses (NASN) Research Committee and the Colorado Association of School Nurses (CASN)
The "Preventing Hepatitis A" online chat is made possible through support from GlaxoSmithKline.
All ASFSA members and the general public are invited to participate in the chat. To participate, visit ASFSA’s Web site, Your Child Nutrition eSource at http://www.asfsa.org, on the day of the chat. There will be instructions on the ASFSA home page for connecting to the chat. A transcript of the chat will be available through the Web site within three days, as well.
Please note that chat participants now can receive one Continuing Education Unit (CEU) towards ASFSA Certification by attending the chat and completing a short quiz afterwards. More information can be found on this new professional development opportunity at ASFSA’s Web site in the Online Education Center.
ASFSA also has scheduled a chat for April 25, at 4pm, EST, on “Diversity in the Workplace.” ASFSA hosts chats every fourth Thursday of the month at 4pm, Eastern Time. In February, ASFSA.ORG hosted a chat on “Promoting School Breakfast.” The transcript for this chat is now available.
See Related Links for more information on past and future online chats. Join the Sanitation and Safety Community within ASFSA's Online Communities to discuss food safety and sanitation issues, exchange ideas on food safety education and keep up-to-date with current trends.
The above is featured as a Reader eSource in School Foodservice & Nutrition.
Barbara Belmont Receives National Honor
ALEXANDRIA, Va., (November 30, 2002) – Barbara S. Belmont, CAE, Executive Director of the American School Food Service Association (ASFSA) and Child Nutrition Foundation, has been named the Association Trends 2002 Association Executive of the Year.
Belmont, is the 24th executive and only the 3rd woman to receive the honor, which recognizes excellence and leadership among executives in the national association community. She was honored at the annual Association Trends Awards Program, at the Capital Hilton in Washington.
“I couldn’t be more pleased that Barbara is this year’s executive of the year,” Trends publisher Jill M. Cornish, said. “She encompasses everything excellent about the association profession, and she’s come this far while successfully facing the challenge of single motherhood. What an incredible woman!”
Belmont has headed the ASFSA since 1993. The association, with over 55,000 members, was founded in 1946. “Serving an association with a mission that you feel is important is one of the most satisfying aspects of being an association executive. The American School Food Service Association is there to see that all children have access to healthy meals and that no child goes hungry.” Belmont said.
Belmont began her association career with the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), starting as an associate editor in publications. She was then promoted to promotion coordinator for all the special interest councils. This was followed by being selected as the Executive Director for the Executive Officers Council consisting of more than 600 state and local home builder assn execs. While at NAHB, Belmont served as a staff VP of marketing, association services, membership and special industry councils. She also was senior marketing VP for Smart House, an NAHB for-profit subsidiary. Before entering the profession of association management, she was a history and civics teacher in St. Louis.
“I found that staying the course paid off,” she said. “I worked for NAHB from 1978 for over 14 years and there were days of anger, frustration, stress and fairness issues, but I had a wonderful mentor who made me believe that people do recognize good work and eventually the right things happen.”
She built her career while raising her two children under the strains of single parenthood. Today daughter Erin Ranee McCahill works for BBC Television in London, and daughter Jennifer Lauren Soloway is a financial analyst for Comark in Chicago. She also is completing her MBA. “It is possible to build a successful association career while being a single parent. I didn’t say easy, but possible. My daughters were 8 and 7 when I went to work for the National Association of Home Builders,” Belmont said.
In her spare time, Belmont serves as secretary-treasurer of the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) and is a director on the Friends of the World Food Programme executive board. She has chaired and served on numerous committees for both ASAE and the Greater Washington Society of Association Executives (GWSAE). Belmont was a recipient of the GWSAE Award of Excellence in Education, the ASAE Innovative Programs education award and 2 ASAE Gold Circle Awards.
She earned a BA in Social Science and an MA in American History from the University of Colorado. She has been a certified association executive since 1986.
See Related Links to visit the Association Trends Web site.
Going Global Wins Prestigious Award
ALEXANDRIA, Va., (January 9, 2002) – ASFSA has been honored with an Award of Excellence in the first round of judging in the 2002 Associations Advance America (AAA) Awards program, sponsored by the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE).
The award program, in its 12th year, recognizes associations and industry partners that advance American society with innovative programs in education, skills training, standard setting, business and social innovation, knowledge creation, citizenship and community service.
Selected by a panel of peers, Award of Excellence winners are automatically entered into consideration for the Summit Award, ASAE’s highest association honor. All AAA Award winners will be honored during ASAE’s Annual Meeting and Exposition in Denver this August.
Going Global was developed by ASFSA staff in partnership with the World Food Programme and the Child Nutrition Foundation. The project objectives are to increase American children’s awareness of global hunger and their involvement as hunger activists. The program also aims to establish a model for the delivery of nutrition education to schoolchildren. The 128-page Going Global Activity Guide is currently being distributed nationwide.
Other programs honored with the 2002 AAA Award of Excellence are:
American Medical Association Medical Student Section
Appalachian Christian Village at Pine Oaks
California Thoracic Society
Federation of State Medical Boards of the United States
Georgia Poultry Federation
Houston Association of Realtors
International Bottled Water Association
National Association of Realtors
National Association of State Treasurers and College Savings Plan Network
National Electrical Contractors Association
New Jersey Broadcasters Association
New Jersey State Bar Association
Women’s International Bowling Congress
Please see Related Links for more information on Going Global, the Activity Guide and the other honors won by this program.
Foundation Name Change
Focuses on Child Nutrition
ALEXANDRIA, Va., (December 13, 2001) – The School Food Service Foundation, sister organization to the American School Food Service Association (ASFSA), has changed its name to the Child Nutrition Foundation.
The change was a natural transition since the focus of the Association as a whole and its fundraising and development has always been on the well-being and nutrition of America’s children.
ASFSA members’ commitment to child nutrition and the contributions they have made throughout their careers inspired the Foundation Board to visibly position “child nutrition” at the forefront of what the Foundation represents. The Board unanimously voted to change the name at its October meeting.
“The focus word in our new name is ‘child.’ This can only enhance the Foundation’s position each and every time we say our name. It is certainly consistent with our mission,” said Marilyn Hurt, Foundation president.
The Foundation provides resources that enable ASFSA to achieve its vision that healthful meals and nutrition education are available to all children. Many of the Foundation’s programs include child nutrition research, public education about school foodservice and the professional development of ASFSA members and school foodservice professionals.
Much of the foodservice industry has also changed to using “child nutrition” for many of its school foodservice programs, so the name change opens up a better connection with them, as well as with the Association’s allied organizations.
For more information on the Foundation and its programs please see Related Links. In January, a new Child Nutrition Foundation section of this Web site will debut. Please be patient during the transition.
The Foundation, established in 1964, is a non-profit corporation dedicated exclusively to child nutrition research, public education and professional development of school foodservice professionals.
ASFSA Responds to Unfair
Criticism of School Lunches
ALEXANDRIA, Va., (October 24, 2001) – In a recent article distributed by Tribune Media Services, writer Jacquelyn Mitchard blames school lunches for the current childhood obesity epidemic. She says that “the school cafeteria is a weapon that will strike children in the heart decades from now” and claims that “children who are hooked on salt and fat-laden school lunches now will carry risk factors into adulthood.”
American School Foodservice Association (ASFSA) President, Marcia Smith, Foodservice Director of Polk County Schools in Florida responds, “All National School Lunch Program meals must meet the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, which recommend that no more than 30 percent of an individual’s calories come from fat, and less than 10 percent from saturated fat. School lunches must also provide one-third of the Recommended Dietary Allowances of protein, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, iron, calcium and calories. Foodservice staff work very hard to make sure that the meals they serve to our nation’s children are nutritious, tasty and reasonably priced.”
Mitchard suggests in her article that parents should pack nutritious lunches including, “ants on a log, yogurt, turkey sandwiches and fat-free dressings.” In fact, many schools offer those exact items to their students. Perhaps the critics of today’s school lunches haven’t visited a cafeteria recently. Salad bars, fresh fruit and vegetables and low-fat milk are widely available.
Current research supports the fact that school lunches are often more nutritious than those packed at home. According to research conducted by Alice Jo Rainville of Eastern Michigan University and published in the Journal of Child Nutrition and Management, meals eaten at school are more nutritious than those brought from home. Rainville evaluated 570 lunches, both prepared by schools and brought from home. She found that the lunches prepared in school had significantly fewer calories from fat than lunches brought from home. In addition, school lunches had more protein, fiber, Vitamin A, Vitamin D, Vitamin B-6, B-12, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, folate, calcium, iron and zinc. The lunches brought from home had more carbohydrates, fat and sugar.
While the issue of childhood obesity is a serious one, physical activity is an important part of the equation. Activity is essential for children, however physical education time is being cut in many schools and children spend numerous inactive hours in front of the television or computer screen.
Smith says, “Rather than point fingers, I would like to see everyone concerned with child nutrition working together to solve the very real issues of child health. ASFSA and its members are committed to playing an important role in this arena.”
ASFSA.ORG to Host
Chat on Biotechnology
ALEXANDRIA, Va., October 23, 2001 – Robert Hahn, associate at Olsson, Frank, & Weeda, will preside over the American School Food Service Association's online chat on the topic of biotechnology on Thursday, October 25 at 4pm EDT at http://www.asfsa.org. Hahn will respond to questions and concerns about biotechnology, specifically addressing the role of genetically modified foods in school feeding programs.
Robert A. Hahn is an associate at Olsson, Frank and Weeda, P.C. He has previously worked as Director of Legal Affairs at Public Voice for Food and Health Policy (now merged with the Consumer Federation of America), Vice President & Counsel at Manufacturers Hanover Trust Company (now Chase Manhattan Bank), and as an associate in the Guangzhou, China office of Lewis, D'Amato, Brisbois, Bisgaard, Buxbaum & Choy. Mr. Hahn has collaborated on several articles and papers including the The Food Institute’s Primer on Food Biotechnology.
Food biotechnology has become the subject of much attention and debate recently. Supporters point to the role genetically modified foods can play in meeting the food needs of the expanding world population. On the other hand, detractors claim modified crops could harm the environment and also create new food safety concerns. Hahn will discuss these arguments as well as talk about the impact such foods can have in school feeding programs.
All ASFSA members and the general public are invited to participate in the chat. To participate, log on to the World Wide Web and go to ASFSA’s Web site, Your Child Nutrition eSource at http://www.asfsa.org, on the day of the chat. There will be instructions on the ASFSA home page for connecting to the chat. A transcript of the chat will be available through the Web site within three days, as well.
ASFSA also has scheduled a chat for November 29, 2001, at 4 PM, EDT, on the ASFSA Certification and Credentialing programs. ASFSA will host chats every fourth Thursday of the month at 4 PM, eastern time. In September, ASFSA.ORG hosted a chat on “Implementing HACCP.” The transcript for this chat is now available.
ASFSA is a national, non-profit professional organization representing more than 58,000 members who provide high-quality, low-cost meals to students across the country. Founded in 1946, ASFSA is the only association devoted exclusively to protecting and enhancing children’s health and well-being through school meals and sound nutrition education.
See Related Links for more information on biotechnology or for more information on past and future online chats.
NSLW 2001: School Lunch
Promotes the Three R’s
ALEXANDRIA, Va., (October 4, 2001) – Reading, writing and arithmetic. Kids who eat nutritious meals not only perform better in these subjects, but in other aspects of their lives as well. That’s why the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) has been providing healthy lunches to students for more than 55 years.
This year the American School Food Service Association (ASFSA) and the United States Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service are pleased to be partners in the promotion of National School Lunch Week (NSLW), October 15-19. The theme for this year’s celebration is “School Lunch: By the Book” which emphasizes the relationship between nutritious school lunches and a child’s readiness to learn in the classroom.
Marcia Smith, president of ASFSA points out, “The National School Lunch Program serves nearly 28 million children each day. For many, this lunch is their most nutritious meal of the day.” The week of October 15 through 19 is a time to recognize the important contribution of the school lunch program to the health and well-being of our children.
In keeping with this year’s theme, school foodservice professionals will plan fun filled menus and plan special events, many focusing on the By the Book theme. Students visiting cafeterias may see unique decorations and even foodservice staff dressed in keeping with the theme.
Throughout the year all meals served in the National School Lunch Program are regulated by the United States Department of Agriculture and are in accordance with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans which recommends that no more than 30 percent of an individual’s calories come from fat, and less than 10 percent from saturated fat. Regulations also establish a standard for school lunches to provide one third of the Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA’s) of protein, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, iron, calcium and calories. Marcia Smith comments, “Healthy school lunches meet the national dietary guidelines and promote healthy bodies and minds.”
NSLW was established in 1963 by a proclamation from President John F. Kennedy. It is designed to help raise awareness of and garner support for the role that school foodservice and nutrition programs play in the lives of America’s children. The American School Food Service Association helps celebrate the event each year with a theme and promotional materials. For more information on National School Lunch Week, see Related Links.
School Food Safety
Committee Members Announced
ALEXANDRIA, Va., (September 26, 2001) – The School Food Service Foundation, sister organization of the American School Food Service Association (ASFSA), announced the formation of its School Food Safety Committee today, along with the names of 12 committee members. The Committee was formed to oversee the Foundation’s participation in a coalition of national organizations to build the capacity of schools to prevent foodborne illness through coordinated school health programs.
Members of the School Food Safety Committee are charged with strengthening the capacity of school foodservice professionals to prevent and/or better manage school-based foodborne illness outbreaks, along with overseeing the implementation of a model, coordinated school food safety program. The school food safety initiative is a result of a grant awarded last month by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that funds a one-year project to provide quality food safety programming for school foodservice operations.
Serving on the School Food Safety Committee will be
Chuck Ainsworth, Division Manager, SFSPac Food Service Sanitation
Julie Nelson MSPH, Program Manager, National Association of County and City Health Officials
Peggy Eller, Wisconsin School Food Service Association
Susan Ehrhart, Program Specialist, Polk County (FL) Public Schools
Sandy Ford, School Foodservice Director, Blue Valley Unified (KS) School District
Brenda Greene, Director of School Health Programs, National School Boards Association
Jane Logan, PhD, Executive Director, National Food Service Management Institute
Mark McGrath, Ed.D., Food Service Management Specialist, School and Community Nutrition Program for the State of Georgia
Suzanne Rigby, Branch Chief, Food Distribution Division, United States Department of Agriculture
Michelle Rosales, Food and Nutrition Service, United States Department of Agriculture
Jeannie Sneed, PhD, RD, SFNS, Hotel, Restaurant, and Institution Management, Iowa State University
Serving as a liaison to the committee will be Glenda Lewis MSPH, Consumer Safety Officer, Food and Drug Administration/Retail Food and Interstate Travel Team.
The School Food Service Foundation, established in 1964, is a non-profit corporation dedicated exclusively to child nutrition research, public education and professional development of school foodservice professionals.
ASFSA.ORG to Host Chat
on Implementing HACCP
ALEXANDRIA, Va., September 25, 2001 – Allen Meyers, CEC, will discuss the implementation of the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) system in the school setting during the American School Food Service Association’s (ASFSA) September online chat, scheduled for Thursday, September 27, from 4:00 to 5:00pm, EDT. The chat is being held in honor of National Food Safety Education Month.
Meyers, founder of Certified Foodservice Consulting, is a certified food safety instructor and has several years of experience implementing HACCP and training school foodservice professionals. He has designed his own Food Protection Management Program as well as a USDA-approved recipe program.
The Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) system is a food safety system designed to monitor food preparation activities, identify where errors in handling can happen, and then implement standards and procedures to eliminate those errors. A well-designed HACCP system encompasses the entire foodservice operation by following the path of potentially hazardous foods through the operation. By focusing on the factors that are critical to food safety, operators can effectively allocate time and resources to concentrate on the critical areas.
The Pillsbury Company developed the HACCP system in 1971 for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). The HACCP system proved so valuable, successful and straightforward in food processing that modified HACCP systems are now widely accepted and increasingly used in the foodservice industry.
ASFSA also has scheduled a chat for October 25, 2001, at 4 PM, EDT, on biotechnology. ASFSA will host chats every fourth Thursday of the month at 4 PM, EST. In August, ASFSA.ORG hosted a chat on “Chapter Successes.” The transcript for this chat is now available.
ASFSA is a national, non-profit professional organization representing more than 58,000 members who provide high-quality, low-cost meals to students across the country. Founded in 1946, ASFSA is the only association devoted exclusively to protecting and enhancing children’s health and well-being through school meals and sound nutrition education.
For more information on National Food Safety Education Month and past or upcoming chats, please see Related Links.
ASFSA Statement on Nutrition
and Policy Gap Analysis
WASHINGTON, D.C., (September 19, 2001) – The American School Food Service Association shares the belief of others in the nutrition community that the gap between what we know about diet and nutrition and what people actually eat is a significant public policy issue. While the Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends 7-10 servings of fruits and vegetables per day, actual consumptions is woefully short of that target. We believe that it is appropriate for the government to address this problem, particularly the environment in schools as it impacts nutrition, activity and health.
In the eight years between the first School Nutrition Dietary Assessment (SNDA) in 1993 and the second study released this year by the United States Department of Agriculture, schools have made significant progress in improving school meals. According to SNDA II (2001), “roughly two-thirds of all NSLP menus offered more than the two fruit and/or vegetable choices required under the food-based menu planning systems. More than one-quarter of all menus included five or more fruit and/or vegetable choices.”
Equally interesting is the change in school meals related to fat and saturated fat.. Whereas in 1991-92 only 34% of all elementary schools participating in the National School Lunch Program even offered meals which meet the dietary guidelines for fat and saturated fat, 82% did in the 1998-99 study period. In secondary schools the change was from 71% to 91%. The problem is the gap between what is being offered and what is being consumed. Of the meals actually served to students (what students select from what is offered), only 19% of all schools met these dietary guidelines.
The message in these numbers is that school cafeterias are making a significant effort to improve what is being offered to children. But we as a society are not being effective in promoting that message with enough urgency as to change children’s behaviors. The barrage of media messages promoting less healthy alternatives is overwhelming our efforts to promote healthier eating including increased consumption of fruits and vegetables.
On the other hand, the situation in schools outside of the cafeteria is dismal. The growth of food sales on campuses, largely of less nutritious foods, other than food served as part of the National School Lunch Program, is contributing to the epidemic of obesity in children today. A front page story in the New York Times on Sunday, September 9, discussed the growing conflict between nutrition policy and economic reality for schools.
ASFSA believes that the gap between what is the consensus on good nutrition and what is reality for too many of America’s children is a legitimate public policy question. The long-term economic impact of diet related diseases which will afflict children who are obese is enormous, far surpassing the cost of addressing these problems today.
For us there are two policy areas that need to be addressed today. First is the need to develop a cohesive national program of education and promotion specifically targeted at children to help them learn to make better choices for a lifetime of good health. Such a program should include school-based and community-based programs. Second is the need to expand the federal government’s authority to establish guidelines on what foods can be sold on school campuses during the school day. Considering the current investment in school meal programs and future healthcare costs from obesity related diseases, this is an appropriate discussion for policy makers to have.
ASFSA.ORG to Host
Human Resources Online Chat
ALEXANDRIA, Va., May 21, 2001 – Karen S. Usher will discuss strategies for handling difficult employees during the American School Food Service Association’s (ASFSA) May online chat, scheduled for Thursday, May 24, from 4:00 to 5:00pm, EDT. Usher, president of The Personnel Office, Inc. and The Fasad Group, Inc., will respond to questions and concerns from chat participants as well as analyze situations that might arise in the workplace.
The best hiring policies, the best benefits, the best training programs – employers try everything to avoid having difficult employees on staff, but inevitably all managers will have to deal with a problem employee at some point. What makes an employee a “bad” employee, and how do you keep them from affecting the efficiency and morale of your staff? Usher will share her expertise on these topics during ASFSA’s online chat.
Founder of The Personnel Office, Inc., Usher has enjoyed a broad career in human resources management. Beginning as a human resources consultant in 1981, she has conducted assignments in a wide variety of industries and with non-profit organizations of all sizes. Prior to establishing The Personnel Office in 1994, Ms. Usher founded The Fasad Group, Inc., a broad-based human resources strategic planning consultancy specializing in the development of unique human resource programs for smaller and medium-sized businesses. Clients of The Personnel Office and The Fasad Group include MCI Telecommunications Group, Nestlé Foods Corporation, United Press International and Sara Lee Corporation.
All ASFSA members and the general public are invited to participate in the chat. To participate, log on to the World Wide Web and go to ASFSA’s home page at http://www.asfsa.org, Your Child Nutrition eSource, on the day of the chat. There will be instructions on the ASFSA home page for connecting to the chat. A transcript of the chat will be available through the Web site within three days, as well.
Please note that chat participants now can receive one Continuing Education Unit (CEU) towards ASFSA Certification by attending the chat and completing a short quiz afterwards. More information can be found on this new professional development opportunity at ASFSA’s Web site at http://www.asfsa.org.
ASFSA also has scheduled a chat for June 28, 2001, at 4pm, EDT, on competitive foods. ASFSA will host chats every fourth Thursday of the month at 4pm, EST. In April, ASFSA.ORG hosted a chat on universal feeding, specifically Provisions 2 & 3. The transcript for this chat is now available at http://www.asfsa.org.
For more information on past and upcoming chats, please see Related Links.
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