Kiko's Food News, 11.4.11

The government has proposed the first changes in 15 years to its $11 billion school-lunch program, such as decreasing the starch and salt content in lunches; food companies including Coca-Cola, Del Monte Foods and the makers of frozen pizza and French fries have a huge stake in the new guidelines and many argue that it would raise the cost of meals and call for food that too many children just won’t eat: (full story)

Well, at least one school district is full speed ahead: the Chicago Public Schools announced that its main food-service company will begin buying and serving chicken drumsticks from birds raised in the local area without antibiotics. The deal will bring 1.2 million pounds of chicken to 473 schools per year, and makes Chicago the nation’s largest district to endorse feeding kids chicken that is antibiotic-free. (full story)

A study released this week revealed that U.S. children and teenagers are seeing far more soda ads than before, with blacks and Hispanics being major targets as marketers have expanded online. Black children and teens saw 80 to 90 percent more ads than white children, Hispanic children saw 49 percent more ads for sugary drinks and energy drinks on Spanish-language television, and Hispanic teens saw 99 percent more ads: (full story)

Mark Bittman aimed his discussion this week at those who think eating locally is an “elitist plot”. To counter those who believe they’re entitled to eat any food any time, Bittman argues that to grow what you can close to where you live and eat what you can grow is nothing new, certainly not elite, and necessary: (full story)

The New York Times highlighted a swarm of new butcher shops that are turning around the way meat is bought and sold in the US, including that of our friend Patrick Martins whose Heritage Meat Shop seeks out breeds of cattle or hogs other than those favored by industrial meat packers: (full story)