WOODBURY, N.Y., March 29, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Representatives from a dozen school systems throughout Louisiana were in attendance at the "Feeding the Future of America" Program recently in New Orleans. In an effort to help feed hungry children, the purpose of the event was to teach schools how to increase school breakfast participation by offering Breakfast in Classroom Programs and Alternate Site Programs.
Hosted by E S Foods of Woodbury, NY, and Choice Foods of New Orleans, Louisiana, the event was held on February 22. Among the guests was Dickie Brennan from Brennan's Restaurants, who attended on behalf of the Mayor's Office. Brennan is actively involved in anti-hunger advocacy in New Orleans.
Speakers included New Orleans born and raised Tony Geraci, chef and Baltimore City Schools Child Nutrition Supervisor, and Cecelia Enault, LDN, RD, the Lead Coordinator of Child Nutrition for Jefferson Parish Public Schools in Marrero, Louisiana, where she oversees the operations to serve 13,000 breakfasts and 29,600 lunch meals daily
Enault shared with attendees her Breakfast in the Classroom Pilot Program which just launched that very week. As a result of a Silent Hero Grant her district received last year from the got breakfast? Foundation, eight schools in Jefferson Parish were about to take part in the study.
Today, Enault reports promising results. "Our program began during the week of February 21, 2011, with 2-3 schools starting each day. Average Daily Participation (ADP) in the eight pilot schools was 45% of attendance when the program began, or about 1575 students. Currently it is estimated at 85%," said Enault. On average, participation has increased by 94% in the schools since the program began and averages 3055 students daily. "Comments from principals, students, and teachers have been largely positive. If the financials validate our estimates, we plan to bring the program to additional schools in the fall of 2011."
Geraci also discussed the benefits of Universal School Programs. In Baltimore, he implemented successful Classroom Breakfast and Alternate Site Programs throughout the city-wide school district. As a result, he was able to increase breakfast participation from 8,500 meals per day to 45,000 meals per day.
These results were no surprise to event host E S Foods, as the company has been working hard to get the message out that Classroom Breakfast is a solution to many of the challenges schools face in offering a breakfast program. Its flagship brand, Breakfast BREAKS, is a shelf-stable, convenient grab 'n go meal in eco-friendly packaging – ideally suited for classroom breakfasts. According to the Food Research and Action Center's School Breakfast Scorecard for 2009-2010, serving Breakfast in the Classroom is a key strategy for increasing participation rates.
The event leaders from the "Feeding the Future of America" program also went to several different schools to help them on their first day of Breakfast in the Classroom. "Kids loved it and participation went way up," says Luis Santiago, Vice President of Sales, E S Foods. "One school went from feeding 150 kids to over 400."
E S Foods, headquartered in Woodbury, New York, is dedicated to providing nutritious, value-added, "kid-friendly" foods for America's school children. For more information, visit www.esfoods.com.
SOURCE E S Foods