For the past year we’ve seen numerous reports about how school districts and students have been rebelling against the supposedly healthy school lunches prescribed by lunch czar Michelle Obama. In a number of schools, students were dumping entire lunches in the trash cans. At other schools, students are served moldy and very unappetizing food. Schools are complaining that it costs them too much to serve the foods required by the Michelle O standards, meaning they have to cut programs or staff in order to follow the guidelines. At least 1.4 million students nationwide have opted out of the National School Lunch Program also known as the Michelle O lunch program, which controls calories, fat, sodium, sugar and other elements that many claim makes lunches inedible.
This week I spoke to a public school teacher who told me that a lot of the food being served to students is disgusting and he often sees students dumping part or all of their lunches in the trash. He said that Michelle O’s healthy lunches are actually unhealthy because students would rather go hungry than eat them. If they won’t eat the lunches, how can they be healthy?
I then shared with him the report coming out of Reidsville, North Carolina. Students at Reidsville High School complained about the Michelle O burgers they were served. Parts of the burgers were still pink on the outside and red inside.
When parents complained to the school about the unappealing raw looking burgers, the school claimed that they were fully cooked. They brought the health department in to look into the burgers and they agreed with the school that the pink and red burgers were fully cooked and safe to eat.
Sonja Parks, Assistant Superintendent for Rockingham County Schools went an email to the local media, saying:
“On Friday, November 6th RCS introduced a ¼ lb. hamburger to our high schools. When the meat arrived it was fully cooked. The directions stated to bake the hamburger. At Reidsville High School the hamburgers were steamed instead of baked causing the enzymes to turn the meat red. No students or staff was not affected by the way the food was prepared.”
“We have checked with the company Advance Pierre and they have verified that the hamburger was fully cooked. In response, the principal apologized for this error and the cafeteria staff will be more vigilant in following directions on the preparation of all food. We will continue to work with staff to ensure that the students are served high quality items prepared to the specification required.”
Advance Pierre Foods, the supplier of the burgers added to Parks’ statement, saying:
“There is an explanation for why fully-cooked products revert back to a pink pigment – a natural chemical reaction can occur with meat products when they are placed for a period of time in a high-temperature/low-oxygen container or appliance, such as steam table pans, steamers, Combi-Ovins and any other environment where the product may stay moist and hot.”
“We have noticed that on occasion, this chemical reaction causes the pigment of some of our products to change back to pink. This pigment is known as globin hemochrome and is completely harmless and does not in any way affect the safety or taste of the product.”
Tara Martin, a spokeswoman for Rockingham County Health Department said that the burgers were cooked at 190º which exceeds the 135º minimum cooking temperature required. She added:
“There’s no danger to anybody consuming this particular burger. It would be a quality issue versus an issue with somebody getting sick.”
“The Rockingham County School system – all of the cafeterias are probably some of our cleanest eating establishments in Rockingham County.”
However, parents are still not satisfied, saying that the appearance of the burgers is too disgusting to eat. Meagan Richardson posted the following on her Facebook page:
“Regardless if the burgers are safe, it looks disgusting. I certainly wouldn’t eat it.”
Tammy Martin, another parent, stated:
“No wonder my son comes home starved! I wouldn’t eat that crap either!”
If you were served burgers that looked like those in the photo above, would you eat them? I wouldn’t and I wouldn’t expect anyone else to do so either. This is just another of many examples of how everything Barack and Michelle Obama touch is a disaster and only serves their own power hungry egos.