The Trump administration recently rolled back a rule that said foods like bread and pasta have to be made with whole grains. Before the rule was relaxed, schools needed temporary waivers to serve foods like white rice, which have a finer texture but also less fiber.
Examples of foods schools wanted exempt from the whole grains rule.
Hamburger and hot dog buns got exemptions, but a past request for breakfast pastries was denied.
A district cited “cultural significance” in requesting permission to serve Sailor Boy Pilot Bread, a cracker-like product eaten in the state.
Whole-grain pizza crusts harden when cooked, according to one district. “As long as students are used to the shells from Little Caesar and Dominoes they will not be happy with our product,” it said.
Students don’t like whole-grain croissants, one district said. “Plus they are 20 cents more per serving.”
“I stopped eating macaroni and cheese when you guys started making it beige,” one district quoted a student as saying in a waiver request for pasta.
“The cheese doesn’t mix well with the wheat pasta, its actually gross,” a district wrote. It said the whole-grain pizza was also more expensive and not as popular.
A school lunch official said the “whole grain biscuits are terrible” and that they affect the “test scores of rednecks.”
Bread, English muffins, bagels were requested exempt by one district, for reasons including quality, financial impact and availability.
Tortillas and pizza do not retain the desired texture or lost palatability during the hold time, a district said.
Pop Tarts, puff pastry sheets, fruit turnovers were among the foods schools requested waivers for in the current school year.
Whole-grain items cost more, a district noted. It said whole grain pasta is $1.22 per pound, compared with 76 cents per pound for traditional pasta; biscuits are 26 cents per serving, compared with 17 cents; saltines were 2 cents per cracker, compared with 1 cent.
Along with the more typical requests, beignets, jambalaya and sugar cookies were among the items schools requested waived.
Bagels, cereal, pancakes and pizza were among the exempted foods for the current school year.
A request for pasta and Chef Boyardee ravioli said most children the district serves are in “low poverty” and rely on school meals. “With this said we would like to provide meals children are willing to eat and not go hungry,” the request said.
Districts requested waivers for a hot cereal popular in the area called Coco Wheats .
Saltines, pasta, sub buns and French toast sticks were among the foods districts requested waived.
Whole-grain pasta is gritty and discolors the cheese, according to a waiver request for mac and cheese.
Students like being able to choose between white and wheat bread “just like Subway,” a district said in requesting a waiver for subs. The request was denied.
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