It’s time to hand out some kudos this week, as we look at the world of food and agriculture. Instead of complaining about all the injustices we face as producers of food and fiber, I think we need to give a little credit where credit is due.
Many of you have probably already heard about the USDA lifting the ban on school lunches. For those who never knew about the ban, let me catch you up to speed: The USDA limited the intake of grains, starches and protein in public school lunches This brought uproar around the country, especially from parents of athletes. Students from the rural areas of Nebraska even made a video that went viral on YouTube about how hungry they were in school, with fainting volleyball players and weak football players.
This was a loud enough noise for lawmakers to put pressure on the USDA, and it lifted the ban, giving school districts more flexibility with their menus, and those schools with limited resources. Kudos to USDA for recognizing the needs of our students and taking action!
Remember the big ban on flavored milk in schools and the school districts in Oregon, Georgia, California and Florida that wanted nothing but white milk served in public schools?
I’m happy to report the Lebanon Public school district in Lebanon, Ore., has seen the light.
Two parents approached the school board with factual information about the goodness of chocolate milk and the amount of wasted white milk they measured from the students who threw it out during lunch, not to mention the dramatic decrease in students who purchased school lunches.
Amazingly, the school board listened and decided it would be better for everyone if they brought back chocolate milk. Kudos to a school board that listened to reason and decided not to throw the baby out with the bathwater!
Fox News recently went to the University of California-Davis and did a news segment on the merit of a degree in agriculture. They followed several students around the campus, brought out the fact students with degrees in agriculture are in short supply and that students from all walks of life are pursuing the ag path.
It was a positive spotlight on our young people and their love for agriculture. They also commented with the growing population, feeding the world is important, and that agriculture touches every person no matter what. Kudos to Fox News for shining a light on our industry!
Finally, I’d like to give kudos to Dr. Ann Kulze, M.D. of South Carolina who, on a recent radio show, told listeners dairy products are good for them, red meat is a part of every balanced diet and that fats are necessary for the absorption of certain foods.
And, she said Suzanne Somers’ book (the one that says dairy products are bad for you) is full of lies.
Kudos to you, Dr. Kulze!
These are all small victories that have been positive for agriculture.
As producers of food and fiber, we have the edge – and that’s a wholesome product.
Let’s keep making that good product and promoting it with factual information until we satisfy the knowledge-craved appetite of everyone we meet.
The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of Farm World. Those with questions or comments for Melissa Hart may write to her in care of this publication.