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    School Lunches Around the World

    by Swikar Patel posted May 14, 2014

    Associated Press photographers captured the lunch fare for students in several countries earlier this month, showing a range of foods, customs, and nutritional standards.

    Children stand in a queue to receive a free mid-day meal made of sweetened rice at a government school on the outskirts of Jammu, India, on May 6. The Mid-Day Meal is a massive school feeding program reaching out to millions of children in primary schools across India, mainly to enhance school enrollment and attendance and improve nutritional levels among children. --Channi Anand/AP

    Children stand in a queue to receive a free mid-day meal of sweetened rice, at a government school on the outskirts of Jammu, India. The Mid-Day Meal is a massive school feeding program reaching out to millions of children in primary schools across India, mainly to enhance school enrollment and attendance and improve nutritional levels among children. –Channi Anand/AP

    A school lunch at El Caminet del Besos kindergarten is pictured in Barcelona, Spain, on May 6. The lunch is composed of cream of vegetable soup, pan-fried breast of veal with salad, a piece of bread, an orange or banana and water. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. --Manu Fernandez/AP

    A school lunch at El Caminet del Besos kindergarten in Barcelona, Spain, includes cream of vegetable soup, pan-fried breast of veal with salad, a piece of bread, an orange or banana, and water. A number of countries put a premium on offering school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too, by replacing pizza and french fries with whole grains, low fat protein, fresh fruit, and vegetables. –Manu Fernandez/AP

    The a school lunch of an omelette, vegetable soup, banana yogurt and water are served at the Chiquitin kindergarten in Madrid, Spain, on May 6. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. --Daniel Ochoa de Olza/AP

    A school lunch of an omelette, vegetable soup, banana yogurt, and water are served at the Chiquitin kindergarten in Madrid, Spain. –Daniel Ochoa de Olza/AP

    Baani, a 5-year-old Indian schoolgirl, eats her lunch prepared by her mother, consisting of flatbread, a turnip dish and mangoes, at a school in Jammu, India, on May 6. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too, by replacing greasy pizza and french fries with whole grains, low fat protein, fresh fruit and vegetables. --Channi Anand/AP

    Baani, a 5-year-old Indian schoolgirl, eats lunch prepared by her mother, consisting of flatbread, a turnip dish, and mangoes, at a school in Jammu, India.  –Channi Anand/AP

    Mamadou Diagana, shows his fried donuts as he makes his way to school in Bamako, Mali, on May 6. In Mali’s capital, the majority of students go to neighborhood schools and return home from noon to 3 p.m. so they can eat lunch with their families. The they then return to class until 5 p.m.  --Baba Ahmed/AP

    Mamadou Diagana, shows his fried donuts as he makes his way to school in Bamako, Mali. In Mali’s capital, the majority of students go to neighborhood schools and return home from noon to 3 p.m. so they can eat lunch with their families. The they then return to class until 5 p.m. –Baba Ahmed/AP

    Bowls of salad are ready to be served on May 6 at Delcare Edu Center, a local kindergarten and child care center in the business district of Singapore. Everyday, lunch is prepared by the school's kitchen staff, who take great care to promote healthy eating in the selection of their ingredients and methods of food preparation. The children in this school are also taught to accept a wide variety of food and a weekly menu is prepared by the principal each school term. Healthy snacks consisting of fruits, home-made bread, natural beans, soup and barley are served between meals. --Wong Maye-E/AP

    Bowls of salad are ready to be served at Delcare Edu Center, a local kindergarten and child-care center in the business district of Singapore. Everyday, lunch is prepared by the school’s kitchen staff, who take great care to promote healthy eating in the selection of their ingredients and methods of food preparation. The children in this school are also taught to accept a wide variety of foods and a weekly menu is prepared by the principal each school term. Healthy snacks consisting of fruits, home-made bread, natural beans, soup, and barley are served between meals. –Wong Maye-E/AP

    A school lunch featuring a grilled cheese sandwich on whole grain bread is served with a southwestern-style corn salad, fresh carrots and either canned pears or apple sauce on May 5 at Mirror Lake Elementary School in Federal Way, Wash., south of Seattle. On this day, students could choose between this lunch or a green salad entree option featuring low-sodium chicken, a whole-grain roll, fresh red peppers, and cilantro dressing. --Ted S. Warren/AP

    A school lunch featuring a grilled cheese sandwich on whole grain bread is served with a southwestern-style corn salad, fresh carrots, and either canned pears or apple sauce at Mirror Lake Elementary School in Federal Way, Wash., south of Seattle. On this day, students could choose between this lunch or a green salad entree option featuring low-sodium chicken, a whole-grain roll, fresh red peppers, and cilantro dressing. –Ted S. Warren/AP

    A school lunch salad entree option featuring low-sodium chicken, a whole-grain roll, fresh red peppers, and cilantro dressing is assembled in a lunch basket at Mirror Lake Elementary School in Federal Way, Wash., south of Seattle, on May 5. On this day, students could choose between this salad and a more traditional lunch of a grilled cheese sandwich on whole grain bread served with a southwestern-style corn salad, fresh carrots and either canned pears or apple sauce. --Ted S. Warren/AP

    A school lunch salad entree option featuring low-sodium chicken, a whole-grain roll, fresh red peppers, and cilantro dressing is assembled in a lunch basket at Mirror Lake Elementary School in Federal Way, Wash., south of Seattle. –Ted S. Warren/AP

    A school lunch consisting of rice, salmon, ratatouille, a slice of bread, a salad with celery and carrots, and an orange and donut is laid out on a tray at the Anne Franck school in Lambersart, northern France, on May 6. --Michel Spingler/AP

    A school lunch consisting of rice, salmon, ratatouille, a slice of bread, a salad with celery and carrots, and an orange and donut is laid out on a tray at the Anne Franck school in Lambersart, northern France. –Michel Spingler/AP

    Students eat their lunch at the Bahria Foundation school in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, on May 6. Most of the children at the school have home cooked food for lunch, which contain eggs, chicken nuggets, bread, rice or noodles. Some have vegetables, minced mutton or beef prepared and cooked at home the night before. Principal Syeda Arifa Mohsin says the school tries to dissuade parents from fixing junk food for their children. --Anjum Naveed/AP

    Students eat their lunch at the Bahria Foundation school in Rawalpindi, Pakistan. Most of the children at the school have home-cooked food for lunch, which contain eggs, chicken nuggets, bread, rice or noodles. Some have vegetables, minced mutton, or beef prepared. Principal Syeda Arifa Mohsin says the school tries to dissuade parents from fixing “junk food” for their children. –Anjum Naveed/AP

    Assorted lunch plates are arranged at a table for students at the Bahria Foundation school in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, on May 6. Most of the kids seen there have home cooked food for lunch. Principal Syeda Arifa Mohsin says the school tries to dissuade parents from fixing junk food for their children. “If we discover that a child has junk food, we ask his or her parents to please make a little effort for their child’s health,” Mohsin says. --Anjum Naveed/AP

    Assorted lunch plates are arranged at a table for students at the Bahria Foundation school in Rawalpindi, Pakistan. Most of the children seen there have home-cooked food for lunch. Principal Syeda Arifa Mohsin says the school tries to dissuade parents from fixing junk food for their children. “If we discover that a child has junk food, we ask his or her parents to please make a little effort for their child’s health,” Mohsin says. –Anjum Naveed/AP

    A public elementary school girl buys a pancake for her lunch on the street in Jakarta, Indonesia, on May 6. In Indonesia, not every student can bring a lunch box to school. Public school students buy their lunch at school cafeterias or food stalls on the nearby streets. The price for one pancake is about one U.S. cent.  --Achmad Ibrahim/AP

    A public elementary school girl buys a pancake for her lunch on the street in Jakarta, Indonesia. In Indonesia, public school students buy their lunch at school cafeterias or food stalls on the nearby streets. The price for one pancake is about one U.S. cent.
    –Achmad Ibrahim/AP

    Palestinian students hold up their sandwiches of pita bread stuffed with olive oil and zaatar, a mixture of herbs and spices, brought from home, during their half-hour mid-day break at about 11 a.m. in the West Bank city of Nablus on May 6. Palestinian children in the West Bank usually eat during recess in the schoolyard, as there are no dining rooms in schools. --Majdi Mohammed/AP

    Palestinian students hold up their sandwiches of pita bread stuffed with olive oil and zaatar, a mixture of herbs and spices, brought from home, during their half-hour mid-day break at about 11 a.m. in the West Bank city of Nablus. Palestinian children in the West Bank usually eat during recess in the schoolyard, as there are no dining rooms in schools. –Majdi Mohammed/AP

    Two lunch trays at a primary school in London are served during a lunch break on May 6. The meal choice at right consists of pasta with fresh broccoli and slices of bread, and seasonal fresh fruit. At left are vegetable chili with rice and fresh broccoli, sponge cake with custard, and a banana. The drink options are milk and water. --Sang Tan/AP

    Two lunch trays at a primary school in London are served during a lunch break. The meal choice at right consists of pasta with fresh broccoli and slices of bread, and seasonal fresh fruit. At left are vegetable chili with rice and fresh broccoli, sponge cake with custard, and a banana. The drink options are milk and water. –Sang Tan/AP

    A plastic plate containing an empanada of meat, milanesa (meat covered with egg and bread), and potato is set on a table where children ages 2 to 5 years old have lunch at a school in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on May 6, 2014. In Argentina, most children have been able to count on some relative providing a hot homemade lunch before or after they attend public school, which is generally taught in four-hour shifts in the morning or afternoon. --Natacha Pisarenko/AP

    A plastic plate containing an empanada of meat, milanesa (meat covered with egg and bread), and potato is set on a table where children ages 2 to 5 years old have lunch at a school in Buenos Aires. In Argentina, most children have been able to count on some relative providing a hot homemade lunch before or after they attend public school, which is generally taught in four-hour shifts in the morning or afternoon. –Natacha Pisarenko/AP

    A student's lunch box brought from home sits on display at an elementary school in Quito, Ecuador, on May 6. The lunch consists of a sandwich of ham, cheese, tomato and lettuce, a boxed oatmeal drink, and an apple. --Dolores Ochoa/AP

    A student’s lunch box brought from home sits on display at an elementary school in Quito, Ecuador. The lunch consists of a sandwich of ham, cheese, tomato and lettuce, a boxed oatmeal drink, and an apple. –Dolores Ochoa/AP

    A lunch box containing rice with chicken Milanesa (chicken covered with egg and bread) sits on a table where kids ages 2 to 5 have lunch at a school in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on May 6. Argentine culture celebrates tight-knit families with multiple generations living together or just down the street, meaning most children have been able to count on some relative providing a hot homemade lunch before or after they attend public school, which is generally taught in four-hour shifts in the morning or afternoon. --Natacha Pisarenko/AP

    A lunch box containing rice with chicken Milanesa (chicken covered with egg and bread) sits on a table where children ages 2 to 5 have lunch at a school in Buenos Aire. Argentine culture celebrates tight-knit families with multiple generations living together or just down the street, meaning most children have been able to count on some relative providing a hot homemade lunch before or after they attend public school, which is generally taught in four-hour shifts in the morning or afternoon. –Natacha Pisarenko/AP

    Sri, a house maid, shows a lunch box she prepared for her employer's child, at an elementary school in Jakarta, Indonesia, on May 6. The lunch consists of rice, meatball soup, and tofu and vegetables. Most countries put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. The new American standards for school lunches are giving kids in the United States a taste of the good life already experienced by school children around the world. --Achmad Ibrahim/AP

    Sri, a house maid, shows a lunch box she prepared for her employer’s child, at an elementary school in Jakarta, Indonesia. The lunch consists of rice, meatball soup, and tofu and vegetables. Most countries put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime.–Achmad Ibrahim/AP

     

     

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