Each Friday I compile a list that highlights five things you probably missed in the news that week and why you should care about them.
Here’s your list for the week of Aug. 31:
1. Food manufacturers: Don’t change school meal regs
By the end of the month, Congress has to make a decision on Child Nutrition Reauthorization. While the School Nutrition Association and many child nutrition directors are asking for flexibility many of the food manufacturers that supply school-based products are asking for the rules to remain the same. The reason: These companies have already spent millions of dollars in R&D and have created products that are currently in schools and selling. They feel any change in the rules could force them to go back to the drawing board to develop new products, sticking them with products designed for schools that they can no longer sell to those customers.
Read more: Food giants call truce with Michelle Obama
2. University of Buffalo undergoes $3.5 million foodservice project
From a new menu and a new Starbucks, UB students have seen a change to their campus dining program. Renovations at the start of a school year aren’t new on college campuses, but what makes UB’s cool is a new wellness initiative that ties incentives to healthy purchases. For every dollar spent, students earn a point. Those points can be redeemed for items at Campus Tees, a website selling licensed UB gear. In addition to the incentives, UB made changes to its wellness offerings, including revamping its vending program to UB Snackin’ and putting better-for-you options in prominent places.
3. Denver schools foodservice workers see bump in minimum wage
Denver Public Schools has increased its minimum wage from $9 an hour to $12, effective immediately. That increase affects 500 foodservice workers, among others. While Denver isn’t the first location to increase its minimum wage for foodservice employees most of the minimum wage talk has come from the college segment of the industry.
4. Feeding visitors at America’s National Parks
More than 292 million people visited hundreds National Park Service locations in 2014. From beaches to forests and monuments, it takes a lot to feed the vast visitor population from all over the world. So what exactly does it take to meet these unique demands? An article in Eater takes a look, but at one location, Jordan Pond House located in Acadia National Park, it means offering afternoon tea and popovers, lest it violate the contract it has with the federal government.
5. Get your Egg McMuffin for dinner
People love breakfast outside the a.m. hours, something college operators know particularly well. Now McDonald’s is getting in on the action. The fast food giant plans to offer a limited breakfast menu starting Oct. 6. “The change represents one of the biggest menu moves the company has made in its storied, 60-year history, yet one in which it doesn’t have to add a single new ingredient,” says an article in Nation’s Restaurant News, a sister publication of Food Management. The move proves you don’t have to add to your purchasing order to expand your offerings and services.