Michelle Obama’s cafeteria train wreck continues to have implications in schools across the country. Kids are voting with their lunch trays and opting out, and in some cases, creating underground markets for salt and sugar to make the meals more tolerable.
The number of schoolchildren participating in the school lunch program continues to decline, as 1.4 million students have dropped out of the program since First Lady Michelle Obama’s lunch rules went into effect. A new Government Accountability Office (GAO) report found that schools are still struggling to meet the healthy rules, with kids not taking to sweet potato tater tots or whole grain pasta.
… Last year was the first time schools had to lower sodium levels below 1,420 milligrams for high school, 1,360 milligrams for middle school, and 1,230 milligrams for elementary students. By 2022, the lunch law requires schools to cut those levels in half. The first target has already caused some school districts to replace all added salt with pepper, which “resulted in a strong pepper flavor for many foods.” Others had to remove pickles from condiment stations.
The GAO also reported that children are bringing salt and pepper shakers to class, similar to other reports that kids are creating their own black markets for salt and sugar as a result of the rules.
This lunch program is proof that no matter how hard the government tries, they can’t micromanage the preferences of individuals, especially when they are children. People who don’t like the rules will find a way to work around the rules, which seems to be a reality that central planners never want to comprehend.