New Research Shows Sodexo School Lunch Saves Time, Money and Provides Good Nutrition
October 12, 2009
Sodexo School Lunch Saves Parents Up to $1000 and Two 40-Hour Work Weeks
GAITHERSBURG, Md., October 12, 2009 — New research from Sodexo School Services shows that buying school lunch provides excellent nutrition and saves parents money and time. Parents with three children can save up to $1,000 per school year and about two 40-hour work weeks of time by purchasing school lunch at one of the 470 school districts Sodexo serves instead of packing a lunchbox.
Sodexo School Services conducted the research for National School Lunch Week, Oct. 12 to 19, to determine if participating in a Sodexo school lunch program is a solution for parents who are concerned about good nutrition, stretching their food budget and are pressed for time.
“Our study assessed how much time and money a sampling of families spent on preparing the contents of a lunchbox and we compared it to the nutritional content, price and time savings of a Sodexo school lunch,” said Roxanne Moore, registered dietitian and Sodexo’s national wellness director. “The Sodexo school lunch won hands down on price, time, nutrient density and variety to satisfy students’ need for change.”
The research showed that the average home-packed lunch contains a sandwich, usually peanut butter and jelly, a drink, a snack or two, and fruit, either fresh or in pre-packaged containers. The cost to pack this type of lunch can vary from $2.50 to $4.00 or more depending on portions served. The national average price of a school lunch purchased in a cafeteria is $1.80. The study recommends that the savings could be redirected to provide better nutrition to families on week nights and weekends and could extend a family’s grocery budget. Parents in the study group reported spending up to 30 minutes each day preparing and packing their children’s lunch. Buying a Sodexo school lunch saves the average family up to $88 and 10 hours per month.
“Families can substitute the time it takes to pack a lunch and use it to be active, read, cook a family meal together or play a game,” Moore said. “This balance and good nutrition will benefit children at home and at school.”
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has established meal pattern and nutrient guidelines for the National School Lunch Program. Schools are reviewed for compliance. Schools offer fruits and vegetables, low-fat milk and more whole grain products than ever before.
Sodexo is committed to take measurable sustainable actions that ensure a brighter future in the areas of health and wellness, environmental stewardship and community development. Sodexo School Services focuses on nutrition, achievements, environment, community and activity to promote student well being.
Sodexo, Inc. (www.sodexoUSA.com) is a leading integrated facilities management services company in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, with $7.7 billion (USD) in annual revenue and 120,000 employees. Sodexo serves more than ten million customers daily in corporations, health care, long term care and retirement centers, schools, college campuses, government, and remote sites. Sodexo, Inc., headquartered in Gaithersburg, Md., is a member of Sodexo Group, and funds all administrative costs for the Sodexo Foundation (www.sodexofoundation.org), an independent charitable organization that, since its founding in 1999, has made more than $11 million in grants to fight hunger in America.