Improving Cafeteria Food

The+thirty+student+taste-testers+fill+out+their+rating+sheets.+Students+felt+important+to+play+a+role+in+improving+cafeteria+food.
The thirty student taste-testers fill out their rating sheets. Students felt important to play a role in improving cafeteria food.

The thirty student taste-testers fill out their rating sheets. Students felt important to play a role in improving cafeteria food.

Heaven Reath

Heaven Reath

The thirty student taste-testers fill out their rating sheets. Students felt important to play a role in improving cafeteria food.

Sumayya Khan and Heaven Reath

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What do you think of when you hear “Cafeteria food”? Most have some type of negative connotation tied to it. However, some LCPS schools, including Trailside got the chance to change that. Ten kids from each grade were randomly picked to taste test new cafeteria food choice

Thirty students from sixth to eighth grade got to taste test breakfast, lunch, and dessert items. Items like tofu, a variety of pastries, empanadas, chicken sandwiches, and more. The students had to rate the items on a scale of one to five, one being poor and five being excellent, on appearance, taste, smell, and texture. Fourteen possible new menu items were tested overall, six lunch, five dessert, and three breakfast options.

Heaven Reath
Sixth grader Emily Ferrier fills out her rating sheet. Ferrier is one of the ten sixth graders chosen to participate in the taste testing.

“We are changing the menu based on the students, because people’s taste in food differ throughout their life. Our (the adults) food preferences are different than what yours (the students) choices are,” Lucas stated, “Students may have liked different foods and elementary school, and now the preferences are totally different.”

This is a first for Trailside, in the five years its been open students have never had this much control over what they eat for lunch five out of seven times a week. “I think it’s great that the cafe’s through the county want to get the kids involved. The students are actually affecting the menu; your voice is heard”, said Mrs. O’Connell, “This has never happened at Trailside before, so I am really excited.”

Heaven Reath
Tofu is one of the vegan options soon to be offered by the cafeteria. The tofu was very popular in Trailside.

Staff aren’t the only ones excited. Unsurprisingly, students are also thrilled about the new choices picked by their peers. One of these students being 8th grader Ryan Lingerfelt.
“I’m excited for new cafeteria food. The current food isn’t very appetizing so hopefully it’ll be better now…”

Out of the tested items tofu seemed to be many’s favorite. According to Lucas, the tofu was also a big hit at Rockridge high school, which was visited prior to Trailside. But the tofu wasn’t the only item in the spotlight. A majority liked the pastries. But what may come as as a shock is that pumpkin spice seemed to be favored.

“I really liked the pumpkin spice. It was my favorite food so far,” said seventh grader Aly Dyer, “It was really flavorful.”

The taste testing will have an impact on the cafeteria food, judged on what these students said about each food. The food is supposed to come seasonally to the cafeteria, so be on the lookout!

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