Friday, August 7, 2009

Vegetarian Lunches: Coming Soon to a School Near You

School lunches are the latest piece of the food chain coming under attack from a group suggesting they’re interested in promoting health, when they are really pushing an anti-meat agenda.

The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) is using the voice of a vegetarian child to promote the need for more meatless and non-dairy options on the school lunch menu.

The group placed posters on Capitol Hill featuring, Jasmine Messiah, an 8-year-old attending a Miami, Fla. public school, who asks: “President Obama’s daughters get healthy school lunches. Why don’t I?”Messiah and the PCRM say vegan, vegetarian and non-dairy options are a must to make school meals healthier.

On it’s website, PCRM says it is a nonprofit health organization that promotes preventive medicine. They also seek to eliminate animal research. Reports I’ve read say they have received as much as $1.3 million from PETA. Other reports say that physicians make up less than 5% of this group‘s members.

I have no issue with improving the quality of what is served in school lunches, we all need to eat more vegetables. But all of us in farm country should have a problem with, mandating a vegan or vegetarian menu as the only way to make these meals healthier.

Today it’s animal foodstuff. Tomorrow it will be anything touched by biotechnology or chemicals.

This group’s primarily goal is to influence how the Child Nutrition Act is reauthorized later this year. That act regulates the National School Lunch Program and could cause significant changes to what is served in school lunches.

This is just one more piece of the debate about what constitutes healthy eating that will be part of upcoming farm and food policy and even the discussions on our nation’s healthcare situation. This isn’t the most organized or well known group in this fight.

But it’s one more thing we need to pay attention to, and work to offset with messages of our own about what constitutes healthy eating.

You can see their campaign at:

1 comment:

  1. This is very scary, but definitely a reality. I was in California this past week and we got to see and hear first hand the agriculture issues they are facing. PETA and HSUS are big ones. I just posted on my blog about PETA's persistence with their McCruelty campaign. Where are the nutritionist. Don't they realize out prevalent iron deficiencies are in children and young women, and that beef is an awesome source of this, along with other vitamins and essential nutrients.