In this edition of 5 Things, Food Management highlights five things you may have missed recently about developments affecting onsite dining.
Here’s your list for today:
1. Michigan students work on securing more local produce for their schools
Through a program called the Locally Integrated Food Teams in the Upper Peninsula (LIFT-UP) project, students from schools in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula are connecting with local farms to assess their school’s current farm-to-school practices to identify ways to overcome these barriers to purchasing local food. In addition to fostering relationships with local food producers, LIFT-UP students have also figured out ways to grow food for themselves, with one school addressing the region’s short growing season by sending heat from the school boiler to an existing hoop house.
2. BLS data: over a third of employed Americans worked form home last year
Nearly 35% of employed Americans worked from home in 2022, up from 22% a decade earlier, according to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Workers with higher levels of education were more likely to work from home: among workers age 25 and up, 54% of those with a bachelor's degree or higher performed some work from home on days worked, compared with 18% of those with a high school diploma and no college.
3. With no state reimbursement, Alaska schools struggle with food costs
According to the latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the price of food in schools has shot up 294% this year and the situation for Alaska schools is particularly dire because “unlike other states, the state of Alaska does not provide any additional reimbursement monies to school nutrition programs,” stated Trevor Bridgewater, president of the Alaska School Nutrition Association. One school nutrition director in the state noted that her weekly grocery bill shot up from around $2,000 in 2010 to $5,000 currently, with most of the increase coming in the past two years.
4. Chicken continues to gain popularity on American plates
Chicken continues to gain in popularity on American plates while beef sags even as it has seemingly beaten back a perceived threat from plant-based alternatives. Statistics show that Americans will eat 100.9 pounds of chicken this year, up from 82.4 pounds in 2010 and 59.5 pounds in 1990 while beef consumption has gone from 67.7 pounds in 1990 to 56.3 pounds today.
5. Aramark opens purely vegan restaurant at German trade fair grounds
Aramark recently opened Germany’s first purely vegan trade fair restaurant at the trade fair grounds in Cologne, part of the company’s sustainability strategy that aims to reduce meat consumption in all business areas by 30% by 2030. The company introduced a new range of plant-forward meals into all 500 German corporate restaurants that it operates last November.
Contact Mike Buzalka at [email protected]