© OLD SAGE HANDS

High School Concession Confession

In Food For Thought on April 15, 2013 at 10:11 am

As the parent of a teenager, I sometimes help at her high school by being part of the volunteer snack concession team. I thought it’d be an easy job as it entails buying snacks and dropping them off at the school. Later, other volunteers sell them at school events to raise money. Since I spend enough time grocery shopping, I figured – I’m there already; grabbing a few more items would be no big deal.

The first shop proved this and was comprised of several cases of water and some pop. Then when I got my recent shopping list, it bothered me that the offerings were all things that no one in my family would touch: cream soda, root beer, orange and grape pop not to mention the array of chocolate bars – it made me feel ill just reading it.

Am I alone here in wanting healthier snacks? This was the question I posed to the coordinator when I had to confess that we personally have never purchased anything when we’re at the school because there were only junk food options. Thankfully, she welcomed my suggestions. So I sent back a list of real fruit juices, coconut water and tea drinks as possible beverages, and a selection of snacks including whole grain crackers and cookies, granola bars, veggie chips and popcorn. She seemed intrigued and willing to try a few to gauge response but first had to take my suggestions, which included price per quantity, to parent council. Although she soon decided we could sneak the juice in this time. Oh course, this was after I had already done the shopping – so it meant another run back to Costco to get it!

Interestingly, what I discovered during my shopping comparisons was that many of the healthier items I suggested cost less than the sugary ones. A win-win situation in my mind for everyone – a greater profit margin for the school and better food choices available. When I shared the story with my daughter, she seemed pleased at the possibility of change and thought people would pounce on the new offerings. In any case, we’re waiting to see what happens. I’ll let you know how it pans out.

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