Dole Food Co. and Homeland Stores, an Oklahoma-based grocery retailer, partnered together to increase healthy food options in schools by donating salad bars to two Oklahoma City public schools.
"Since one in three children, ages 9 to 11, is at risk or already overweight, we need to look at new ways to encourage healthier eating," said Bil Goldfield, director of corporate communications at Westlake Village, Calif.-based Dole, in a news release. "Our mission at Dole is to start the nutrition conversation early in childhood, and promote fresh fruit and vegetables as healthy food options. By providing salad bars that will enable schools to offer a variety of produce choices each day, we are hopefully establishing healthier eating habits that will last a lifetime."
Hawthorne Elementary and Classen School of Advanced Studies will receive the salad bars, which are the first self-serve produce bars in the school district.
"Healthy eating options are key for a healthy lifestyle, and that's a high priority for us when it comes to feeding our kids," said Oklahoma City Public Schools superintendent Aurora Lora in the release.
"I am very appreciative of our community partners for bringing these salad bars into our schools, supporting all the great work that our School Nutrition Services Department is doing to provide fresh and great tasting food choices for our students."
The salad bars were arranged through a partnership with the United Fresh Start Foundation, which has donated salad bars to 5,000 schools over the last six years.