Crafting Healthy School Menus "If an alert mind is the foundation for learning, nutritious meals are the food for thought.” With childhood obesity rates at an all time high, crafting healthy school lunch menus that appeal to kids has never been more important. Fortunately, it’s our specialty at Fresh Picks Café. And we offer schools healthy menus that meet USDA nutritional guidelines and your budget requirements — all while satisfying the finicky tastes of kids. The secrets to our success include time-tested recipe development and a full menu of marketing activities to encourage interest among the younger set in healthy eating. Recipe Development The Fresh Picks Café menu development process starts with a review of our extensive recipe database with resources from local farm products, commodity excess surplus products, our national account purchasing programs and Farm To School initiatives. Each menu is processed through our USDA-approved nutritional analysis software to make sure that all comply and meet age-appropriate targets for calories, total fat (30% or less) and saturated fat (10% or less). Our nutritional analysis also ensures that our menus provide proper levels of protein, vitamins, fiber, minerals, calcium and sodium. Marketing: School Promotions, Theme Days and Specialty Catering To encourage participation in your school district’s dining service program, Fresh Picks Café sponsors a variety of events throughout the year for students, staff and the community. The goal is to make your school cafeteria the center of activity. We decorate your café to create a friendly, welcoming atmosphere for students and staff. And we host theme days with menus planned around seasonal events like President’s Day, Thanksgiving, Cinco De Mayo and Opening Day at the Ballpark — to name a few. Our Local Farm Fresh Taste Testing programs are always successful, as is our support of nationwide events such as National School Lunch Week and National School Breakfast Week. Because your school district is such a vital part of the community, Fresh Picks Café works with you to sponsor school and community events (like fundraisers) that require specialty catering. Whatever we do, it’s all focused on healthy eating and encouraging participation in your school food service program. It’s no wonder the rate of student and adult meal participation at Fresh Picks Café is among the highest in the industry.