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How to Apply for a School Salad Bar from Whole Kids Foundation

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, kids with access to a salad bar in their school cafeteria consume three times more vegetables and fruits than kids without a salad bar. Why? Because they get to choose which veggies and fruits they want.

When you give kids good choices, they’ll make good choices. This fact is proven with salad bars. Kids with access to a salad bar in the school cafeteria not only put more fruits and veggies on their plates, they actually eat them!

Whole Kids Foundation® loves salad bars because they directly support our mission to get kids to eat better…and enjoy it!

That’s why, through key partnerships, we developed the Let’s Move Salad Bars to Schools grant program, which has already raised $6 million and delivered over 4,000 salad bars to schools, serving more than a million children.

Our Salad Bar grant program is an equipment grant. We give the actual salad bar along with the training needed to implement a school salad bar program successfully.

Applications are available year round through Let’s Move Salad Bars to Schools. To apply, you must work with your school district to meet two main criteria:

  1. Whether a public, private or independent school, the school district operates under the USDA National School Lunch Program.
  2. The school implementing the salad bar has at least 100 students.

Before applying, your school should assess their meal program and feel confident that the district can support salad bars, and that the school’s menu plan includes offering salad bars daily as part of their reimbursable meal program. In-depth tools, including an assessment and planning guide, are available on the Lunchbox.org website.

If your school is interested in applying, the district’s food services director should fill out the application and remain the primary contact if your district or school:

  1. Uses a school lunch contract management company (a company outside the school provides all breakfasts & lunches)
  2. Is a charter or independent private school district
  3. Is not part of a larger district

In the above cases, whoever is in charge of food service should be the person applying and responsible for the grant.

To understand what is involved in the application, take a look at the sample application. Key pieces of information include:

  • District enrollment numbers
  • Free and reduced (F/R) participation percentage
  • Average Daily Participation (ADP) percentage
  • Food costs
  • Staff and training
  • Superintendent contact information and district address

For more information and tips on how to apply, visit Let’s Move Salad Bar’s Schools’ website, with information designed both for parents and for school districts.

You can also email info@wholekidsfoundation.org with any questions and sign up for our newsletter or follow us on Facebook or Twitter to receive updates on the work of Whole Kids Foundation!

Are you interested in getting a salad bar in your child’s school? Share your reasons in the comments below.

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Garrett Newberger says …

I think this is a great idea. Schools need more healthy options, and this is great option that whole foods is offering.

Lauren says …

Thanks for sharing. I will love more information on how to keep kids healthier.

PlusCheats.com says …

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Lindsey Fisher says …

YES! I am interested in bringing a salad bar to both the local elementary and middle school where my kids attend. The nutrition from their school lunches is less than desirable and often times unrecognizable. I cringe when I watch what these children are fed - the majority being canned, boxed, prepared and over processed. With 1 in 5 kids diagnosed as overweight or obese, many are also not given the opportunity to try new fruits and vegetables. Diet and nutrition have a direct effect on our kids futures and wellbeing.

June Siegel-Hill says …

Can I do this for a science high school? It's the #1 science high school in the country. My son is vegan and has never bought a school lunch on his life. We don't consider that stuff food!

Carline Bernard says …

I am at the doctor's office with my 9 year old. He just got on the scale and weight 150lbs. I felt so embarrassed and ashamed to let my child get so big. So I Google healthy eating for kids. I want my son to start eating healthy not only at home but in school as well. I though a salad bar in school full of colorful vegetables might help not only my son, but other kids to eat healthy while they are in school. Please help my child.

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