A Time for Choosing (Two)

Nutrition, Inc., concept designed to provide middle/high school customers with choice, variety in sandwich/salad combo selection.

How do you attract older students to eat in the cafeteria while meeting federal nutrition requirements for reimbursable meals? Irwin, PA-based Nutrition, Inc., thinks it may have found one solution with a program called Choose Two.

It offers students a salad/sandwich combo where they can pick from three specialty salad options and three sandwich options each day. The selections are all pre-made and displayed on the serving line.

Sandwiches are tagged with an orange label and salads with green. Students simply pick one orange and one green item. Each combination satisfies the protein, bread and fruit/vegetable components of a reimbursable meal.

Nutrition, Inc., has developed over a dozen recipes for the selections, says Michelle Marker, director of programs and marketing. “We looked for what kids of things kids like out of school and then adapted those,” she says.

Piloted at two schools last spring, Choose Two was rolled out across Nutrition, Inc.'s managed sites over the past few months. Among its advantages are that teenage boys, a traditionally tough sell for school foodservice, “love it,” says Marker. “So do adults like teachers.”