Students in Ann Arbor, Michigan are starting the school year with a healthy new tradition. Beginning this fall, all of Ann Arbor’s 21 public elementary schools will offer nutritious, meatless meals on Mondays.
AnnArbor.com reports that the schools are joining the movement to reap the health and environmental benefits of going meatless one day a week, noting that “the department felt it was in the best interest of the entire community to support.” Meatless Monday has already proven to be an excellent tool for organizing communities around healthy habits. Cities like Aspen and Durham-Raleigh have used this simple idea to rally students, chefs, government officials and local citizens. By offering Meatless Monday at school, Ann Arbor is tapping into the natural cycle of the week to engage students in nutrition education and encourage a diverse diet. This year’s incoming class will enjoy a wide variety of healthy meals, such as whole grain pasta bakes, quesadillas, and entrees that include protein-rich ingredients like beans and yogurt.
The decision to go meatless one day a week came after resident, Heidi Alward, shared the Meatless Monday campaign with the district’s Food Service Director, Heather Holland.
Interested in bringing Meatless Monday to your school district? Start a campaign in time for the coming school year by contacting your district’s dining service provider. Be sure to share our K-12 Meatless Monday toolkit, free posters and bulk recipe ideas for a simple way to boost health in both the classroom and the cafeteria!