Dole Food Co. and retailer Meijer have donated salad bars to five public schools in Detroit, Cincinnati and South Bend, Ind.
Representatives of Dole and Grand Rapids, Mich.-based Meijer dedicated a salad bar at Cornerstone Charter Health High School in Detroit March 4 ceremony, according to a news release.
Other recipients are Dohn Community High School, Cincinnati, and South Bend Community School Corp., which received salad bars for three schools.
The salad bars are provided by a partnership with the United Fresh Foundation, through that organization’s Let’s Move Salad Bars to Midwest Schools initiative. The multi-year campaign is aimed at increasing children’s produce consumption in Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin.
“Since one in three Midwest children, ages 9 to 11, are at risk or already overweight, we need to look at whole new ways to encourage healthier eating,” Bil Goldfield, Dole director of corporate communications, said in the release. “By offering permanent salad bars stocked with fresh fruit and vegetables, we are hopefully establishing healthier eating habits that will last a lifetime.”
Meijer operates 204 supercenters and grocery stores in Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Kentucky.
“With these salad bars donations Meijer aims to really impact the lives of students by making healthy food options readily available at school,” said Brian Coates, senior produce buyer, in the news release.
Supporters of school salad bars have called them an easy way for schools to meet U.S. Department of Agriculture standards requiring more fruits and vegetables, citing the variety of fresh-cut items available as the reason for consumption increases reported where salad bars are in place.
Nationwide, Let’s Move Salad Bars to Schools has donated salad bars to more than 2,800 schools.