Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution

Lounge By adonisthegreek1 Updated 13 Apr 2010 , 2:29pm by springlakecake

adonisthegreek1 Posted 29 Mar 2010 , 7:10pm
post #1 of 27

I don't watch much TV, but Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution on ABC seemed so interesting. Wow, what an eye opener. I can't believe school lunch programs in Huntington, WV serve all of that processed, finger food. Do you think that those kids really did not recognize fresh fruits and vegetables or was it embellished for the show? Can you believe those kids really did not know how to use a knife and fork? This was unbelievable.

26 replies
FierceConfections Posted 29 Mar 2010 , 7:28pm
post #2 of 27

The birth of a processed chicken nugget absolutely terrified me. What was worse is that the kids said they'd still eat it. YAK!

TheCakerator Posted 29 Mar 2010 , 8:43pm
post #3 of 27

I did not watch the show, so I can't say for sure, but I can give my opinion. If a school aged child does not know how to use a knife or fork, or does not recognize vegetables or fruits, then I would start looking at the parents! That isn't right on many levels! Again, just my opinion.

jen1977 Posted 29 Mar 2010 , 8:46pm
post #4 of 27

I am from Charleston WV which is about an hour away, and I can tell you that kids in the state knoiw how to use a fork. I don't know that their lunch program is much different than lunch programs in the rest of the country. They were only chosen because the city was voted unhealthiest in the country. I live in Ohio now, and my kids school lunch menu has chicken nuggets, soft pretzels, foot long hot dogs....the same junk that they have in Huntington, that's why my kids pack! I think what hte show is doing is a good thing for the lunch program, but I was afraid of the impression that would be made of the state. People already think everyone there is a hillbilly anyway, and the show saying that the kids don't know how to use a fork just adds to that reputation. I think the show is doing great, but the reputation of the state that they are portraying on it makes me sick. WV is no different than Ohio, Indiana, or any other state!

CakesByJen2 Posted 29 Mar 2010 , 8:48pm
post #5 of 27

That's exactly the same kind of crap they serve for lunch here in KY. It's all some time of fake, processed, fried "chicken", fake mashed potatoes, breads, etc. Everything is fried, and if they have any kind of vegetable it is canned. Maybe 3-4 times a year they have fresh fruit. The healthiest thing they have is pizza with a whole wheat crust, or ham/turkey sandwiches. It is disgusting! thumbsdown.gifthumbsdown.gif

They count fruit roll-ups as a serving of fruit! icon_eek.gif Can you believe that?? All they are is concentrated fructose, no vitamins left. Ridiculous! Just about everything is finger-food, no real silverware because that is considered a "weapon". All they are given is tissue-paper thin napkins and a little plastic "spork".

My daughter took her lunch all thru elementary school, and her brother does now, but once in middle school it wasn't "cool". She has started taking her lunch again occasionally because she does realize it's much healthier, but she says it's sucha hassle because they aren't allowed to go to their lockers during the day, so she has to carry her lunch box around all day long.

mellormom Posted 29 Mar 2010 , 9:39pm
post #6 of 27

That show was great!!!! My friend's kid watched it and now she wants to cook healthy food and start eating better. My friend couldn't be happier!
School lunch is bad no matter where you are. Hopefully with the help of Mrs. Obama and Jamie things might actually change.
Money will always get in the way though and things might not change.
I hope more people start watching this and seeing what thier kids are really eating!

adonisthegreek1 Posted 29 Mar 2010 , 10:08pm
post #7 of 27
Originally Posted by TheCakerator

I did not watch the show, so I can't say for sure, but I can give my opinion. If a school aged child does not know how to use a knife or fork, or does not recognize vegetables or fruits, then I would start looking at the parents! That isn't right on many levels! Again, just my opinion.

The one household that they visited, the mom had no fruits or vegetables. It was all they same processed junk that they ate at school: corn dogs, pizza, deep fried chicken fingers.

My kids' school does not have a hot lunch program. You can bring a bag lunch or a caterer services the school and you pre-pay for a couple of months in advance. My son takes his lunch, but my daughter get's the catered lunch. Everything is fresh, nothing canned. Processed foods scare me. I do eat them once in a while, but not too often.

costumeczar Posted 30 Mar 2010 , 2:22am
post #8 of 27

That lunch lady needed to be dope-slapped.

LeckieAnne Posted 30 Mar 2010 , 5:33am
post #9 of 27

I saw and was shocked, too. My 2 year old knows what a tomato is for cryin' out loud! (Well, she did help us plant them last summer - and loves to pick and eat them right off the vine.) I must say, I felt so bad for Jamie - they all hated him before he even got there. And I can't decide who needs to be slapped more, the lunch lady, or radio station guy! I cried with him when he was out on the playground. I sure hope he at least helps that one family, though. I feel bad for the boy - and that "little" girl - she's only 4!

Sagebrush Posted 30 Mar 2010 , 7:52am
post #10 of 27

Yeah, I think they serve the same types of foods for lunch here, but I don't know for sure, because I've had my kids take their lunch since I went to have school lunch with my son (now in 9th grade) when he was in kindergarten. We had gone through the line and no sooner sat down to eat when the teachers/lunch monitors where telling us it was time to leave. There was a little girl at our table that was in tears because she was hungry, and they weren't going to allow her to eat the food her parents had purchased for her. I told her as long as I was there, she could just stay and eat, and I wasn't about to pay for all that food just to throw it in the trash. I couldn't go eat there everyday, though, so I just quit letting them have hot lunch. If you bring your lunch, you can just sit down at the table and start eating w/o having to wait in line.

I wonder how much of that food they showed being thrown away had to do with the kids not wanting to eat it, and how much of it had to do with the school's lunch policy regarding time allowed to eat.

I also thought that the requirements from the government were beyond ridiculous. How in the world could what they were serving be sufficient, but the stuff he designed wasn't up to snuff. Brown rice is a good, healthy option... at least equivalent, if not preferable to a SECOND bread. Variety is also healthy. The system is seriously messed up, and even more messed up is the fact that the current, poorly designed requirements was designed by the government.

Also, one of the big problems facing the poor, is that in addition to being more convenient to buy fast food and/or pre-packaged food, it's also CHEAPER to "cook" that way. Fresh food is expensive to start with, and often becomes even more expensive if you don't know how to work excess from one recipe into your menu within a reasonable amount of time.

-Tubbs Posted 2 Apr 2010 , 3:40pm
post #11 of 27

I like Jamie Oliver. I watched a lot of his show about British school meals, and he did manage to get the government on-side to some extent, but of course it's all about money, and they can provide crappy food for cheaper than decent food, so that's what happens. Also the kids were SO resistant, and so were some of the parents. They literally had parents pushing junk food through the bars of the school fence to their children because they didn't buy into the 'healthy eating thing'. These parents were all overweight themselves.

I will be very interested to see how much headway Jamie makes in the US.

Luby Posted 2 Apr 2010 , 4:27pm
post #12 of 27

I didn't see the whole show, but a co-worker told me how they made processed chicken nuggets and I thought I was going to throw up icon_eek.gif

costumeczar Posted 2 Apr 2010 , 9:32pm
post #13 of 27
Originally Posted by Luby

I didn't see the whole show, but a co-worker told me how they made processed chicken nuggets and I thought I was going to throw up icon_eek.gif

My husband was saying "did you really not know how they make those? And hotdogs are the same thing!" I really hadn't given it any thought whatsoever, but it will be a cold day in hell before I eat another one of either of those two items!

noahsmummy Posted 3 Apr 2010 , 9:28am
post #14 of 27

i saw the British version of it, i think hes doing a great job.

im in australia, so weve always brang our own lunches and such... no "cafeterias" here... but that is soo shocking!

hes actaully done a few really good series in britain. there was one, where he was teaching people to cook who had never cooked before; it was fantastic, and shocking to see that these people honestly couldnt cook spagetti! One of them was a family with 2 kids, one girl was 7, she had NEVER had a hoem cooked meal! they lived off fish and chips and such! I was in shock! wow.

noahsmummy Posted 3 Apr 2010 , 9:28am
post #15 of 27

p.s go jamie go!

karateka Posted 3 Apr 2010 , 9:38am
post #16 of 27

Made me proud of what I send my kids to school with. Not that they wouldn't eat processed stuff, but I don't let them. Not that I'm all that, but....felt good after the show was over.

And both of my kids can cook, too. I hope it sticks with them.

mellormom Posted 3 Apr 2010 , 10:54am
post #17 of 27

Last nights show was great too. icon_smile.gif Alice needs an attitude adjustment though! LOL

Lyndseyb52 Posted 3 Apr 2010 , 11:28am
post #18 of 27


I live in the UK and my mum is a school cook for 4-11 year olds. Since Jamie Oliver did his campaign the food she cooks is completely different now. Years ago they didn't have all this processed food so it's like going back to basics. The cakes and biscuits were always made from scratch but all the processed foods they introduced in the 90's has gone. They have fresh fruit, carrot and cucumber sticks with every meal and only have chips/fries once a week.

The only bad thing for my mum is that her work load has doubled with no extra hours or staff, she's even been to college on the same course as people training to be professional chefs and had to cook in restaurant kitchens as part of the course. A bit of a waste of time for my mum who is 5 years from retirement and only ever going to work in the school!

Lyndsey xx

mellormom Posted 3 Apr 2010 , 11:34am
post #19 of 27

That is great that things are going well in England. icon_smile.gif It shows that things can be done and on budget too.

tbittner Posted 12 Apr 2010 , 4:15pm
post #20 of 27

I work in my local school district food service. I am proud to say we currently use a lot of fresh veggies and fruits every day and not only do the kids eat them but they love them! We also only serve fries or any fried items one time every/every other week. The kids love them but they also love the fresh wraps, salads, veggie plates and sandwiches we have.
The dietary guidelines for the state are not only for what is served but what counts for the school to get reimbursed for the lunch (if it is a free or reduced student)
I believe that many of these processed and pre-packaged lunches differ district to district.
The school lunch system is not perfect but they are not all bad.

mellormom Posted 12 Apr 2010 , 4:47pm
post #21 of 27

it's good to know that not all schools are serving processed food. Thanks for giving us the info. icon_smile.gif

rainbow_kisses Posted 12 Apr 2010 , 6:26pm
post #22 of 27

The thing is he has done more harm in the long run here in the Uk in terms of the cost of providing your child with a school lunch. He has helped turn them into a healthy meal but now councils can not sustain the prices and are cutting the wages of the lunch prep staff so that they do not have to keep increasing the meal prices. A school lunch here costs £10 a week per child, and with the way the economy is and teh huge fuel prices that we have £1.20+ a letre for petrol, if you are the lower wage side but do not qualify for free school meals tehn you either have to provide a small packed lunch that is usually sweaty sandwiches as most schools do not refridgerate them and a hot sweaty piece of fruit, no chocolate or crisps are usually allowed. The staff are also now expected to do twice as much work in the same amount of time. Prossesed food is not good, I know, but it should all start at home with the parents not at school with the child.

TexasSugar Posted 12 Apr 2010 , 6:46pm
post #23 of 27
Originally Posted by scrummymummy

Prossesed food is not good, I know, but it should all start at home with the parents not at school with the child.

It should start at home, but doesn't always. Just because someone is an adult or a parent doesn't mean they know anything about proper nutrition.

And there are kids who's families may not eat healthy at home, but atleast they can learn healthier habits at school.

I do think there can be a happy medium found. Yes it costs more to eat healthier, but in the long run it can pay off. I don't think they need to cut staff or anyone's pay, but at the same time I don't think they should just revert back to overly processed/fried foods.

rainbow_kisses Posted 12 Apr 2010 , 7:36pm
post #24 of 27

Texassugar the sad thing is though, for schools to make healthy food it costs more, some one has to pay for that increase and if the govonment is not going to do it the parents are then expected to. The happy medium her in the UK is that they meet part way and reduce wages, (our dinner staff were salaried so got paid for school breaks, now they will only be paid the hours they worked at school so will have to take a second or sometimes third job in holiday time only and have to pay the childcare that working in term time avoided). and also reduce £1 per hour and increase meal prices by 50p a day. So if you have more than one child in school the prices are just too much. If they started a healthy food at home program, educating the whole family in one environment, teaching as many generations as they can how to live healthy, eat healthy and continue to carry it on, the likely hood of it working would be greater.

If a child can eat healthy at school but not continue at home it is partly broken and the child is more likely to resort to the easy option.

My family eat really well and are not fastfoodies as we have to avoid preservatives and certain products. But no doubt give a child from any background the chance and they would choose the simple quick option.

Our schools have been running the Jaimie way for 5 years and now the councils are questioning how they can make big changes in the cost.

shelbur10 Posted 13 Apr 2010 , 10:57am
post #25 of 27

We love this show! I 'saw the light' about our school lunches earlier this year and starting making my kids pack a healthy lunch. The fought me tooth and nail until they watched the show, now the whole family is on board with healthy choices. Our rule is, read the ingredient list...do you know what those thing are? Do you want to eat them? Usually not. It is disheartening how much more expensive it is and how hard it is to find some natural foods. My grocery bill has jumped, but my kids are learning good habits and they're both learning how to make things from scratch. My poor son had no idea that the processed chicken nuggets they serve at school were that different from the 'real' ones we make at home. Kids don't know these things, and if their parents are unwilling or unable to teach them, then school lunch is a great opportunity. It's amazing what kids will eat if you just give them a chance to try new things. We had Greek pitas for dinner last night and the kids cleaned their plates, then my DS told me that most of his friends have hamburgers or chicken nuggets for dinner. I think in our busy society, we need to put more focus on these seemingly small things like a home cooked dinner and a family meal around the table. It's easily the best part of my day.

mim1106 Posted 13 Apr 2010 , 1:48pm
post #26 of 27
Originally Posted by FierceConfections

The birth of a processed chicken nugget absolutely terrified me. What was worse is that the kids said they'd still eat it. YAK!

That part made me gag!! I cannot believe they still ate it after watching him make it!
My kids have a choice between a large salad (usually a chef salad) or their normal menu...pizza, nuggets, nachos. My son LOVES the salad, so he picks that everyday. My daughter on the other hand...

springlakecake Posted 13 Apr 2010 , 2:29pm
post #27 of 27

I love this show! I have been struggling to lose 20-30 pounds for several years now. Over the last 6 weeks, I have been on a real health kick and it helps keep my inspired. However, it really frightens me that I am feeding my kids a lot of junk too! I don't think our school lunches are any different than the ones portrayed on the show. I am sure veggies go on the try, but I will bet my kids don't eat them! I have shaped them to like all of this fatty, salty food. I have been worrying about myself, but I really need to worry about my whole family!! I have decided to make a gradual change with the kids, just try to adopt healthier choices at the house.

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