School Lunches School Nutrition

Published on November 18th, 2011 | by Becky Striepe

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Congress Says Pizza is a Vegetable. Why This is Not OK

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School NutritionA slice of Dominos pepperoni pizza.

Heather posted yesterday about Congress deciding that pizza now counts as a vegetable. Of course, this doesn’t pass what Marion Nestle calls “the laugh test” for most adults, but what do school-aged kids think about the new school lunch rules? And what’s so bad about pizza counting as a vegetable anyway?

Reader Amanda Curry from The Good Food Factory teaches a kids’ cooking class and asked her students what they thought. Here’s their response:

Even these young kids can tell you that pizza is NOT a vegetable.

The Importance of Healthy School Lunches

Many kids rely on cheap or free subsidized school lunches, and many kids would not be able to have lunch at all without them. When so many kids go hungry in our country every day, I think we owe it to them to fund a responsible and truly healthy school lunch program.

It’s disgusting that food lobbyists are working so hard to make a buck off of kids that rely on school lunch for nourishment. I think that the poor quality of school lunches is at the heart of a lot of problems kids have in school, from lack of focus to violence. Just look at Appleton Central High School. They switched to a healthy lunch program (actually healthy, not healthy according to french fry makers). Violence went down and GPAs went up.

Healthy school lunch isn’t about potato growers’ bottom lines or the companies that make frozen pizza. It’s about supporting the next generation, so that they can focus and learn.

More on School Nutrition

Image Credit: Creative Commons photo by dongkwan

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About the Author

My name is Becky Striepe (rhymes with “sleepy”), and I am a crafts and food writer from Atlanta, Georgia with a passion for making our planet a healthier, happier, and more compassionate place to live. My mission is to make vegan food and crafts accessible to everyone!. If you like my work, you can also find me on Twitter, Facebook, and .



  • http://ecolocalizer.com/author/rhondawinter/ rhonda winter

    I remember back in the eighties when Reagan tried to claim that ketchup was a vegetable — really thought that we had already evolved past that sort of insanity.

    • http://glueandglitter.com/main Becky Striepe

      Right? I worry that we’ve devolved instead. I mean, it wasn’t really Congress saying, “pizza is a vegetable.” It was the lobbyists who line their pockets saying, “pizza is profitable.”

  • http://ecolocalizer.com/author/rhondawinter/ rhonda winter

    Another sadly ironic point: botanically speaking, the tomato is not even classified as a vegetable, it is a fruit.

    • http://glueandglitter.com/main Becky Striepe

      What? But Congress says tomato paste is a vegetable. So it must be a vegetable. They wouldn’t make decisions like this without sound, nutritional science on their sides, right? Vegetable!

  • Pingback: 7 More New Fruits & Vegetables from Congress (Other than Pizza)

  • http://liferope.co LifeRope Green Guide

    This is an insult. Political parties aside. It is obvious that the voice of the people believes that the people are idiots. How can we have these idiots (congress) making these decisions. Arrogance and Ignorance go hand in hand.

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