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Free For All

(book, Janet Poppendieck)

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h4. From the publisher

How did our children end up eating nachos, pizza, and Tater Tots for lunch? Taking us on an eye-opening journey into the nation's school kitchens, this superbly researched book is the first to provide a comprehensive assessment of school food in the United States. 

Janet Poppendieck explores the deep politics of food provision from multiple perspectives — history, policy, nutrition, environmental sustainability, taste, and more. How did we get into the absurd situation in which nutritionally regulated meals compete with fast-food items and snack foods loaded with sugar, salt, and fat? What is the nutritional profile of the federal meals? How well are they reaching students who need them? 

Opening a window onto our culture as a whole, Poppendieck reveals the forces — the financial troubles of schools, the commercialization of childhood, the reliance on market models — that are determining how lunch is served. She concludes with a sweeping vision for change: fresh, healthy food for all children as a regular part of their school day.