Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Meatless Monday for Your School or Business


As a local business owner and mother of 5, I would like to encourage you, your business and/or school to help spearhead the tremendous efforts of Meatless Monday. I am not affiliated with Meatless Monday, I am simply inspired by the phenomenal efforts of the organization and hopeful about getting our city involved in this positive, nutritional and exciting adventure – in the process, setting healthy standards for families and students in our community!

Meatless Monday is a non-profit initiative in association with the Johns Hopkins’ Bloomberg School of Public Health. Its goal is to help reduce meat consumption 15% in order to improve personal health and the health of our planet.

There are many powerful benefits to going meatless once a week. It may reduce the risk of chronic preventable conditions like cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity. It can also help lessen our carbon footprint and save precious resources like fresh water and fossil fuel. As a side benefit, it will cut the cost of food – just by having one meatless meal a week!

Consider the success of the Baltimore City Public Schools’ Meatless Monday program (recently showcased on ABC News). Its 80,000 students now have the chance to start each week with fresh, whole produce. Plus they can learn about plants and animals by visiting the system’s 33-acre teaching farm. As most of these students grow up in an urban setting, this is a rare, exciting opportunity for them. Other initiatives are underway at Northern Kentucky University and Harvard University, to name just two. Each school has its own objectives, and is free to use the program as it sees fit.

So what would you need for your business or school district to participate? Simply the will to improve the health of your students and the health of the planet – plus save your schools a good deal of money along the way! People ask what can be served on Meatless Monday? Most children/people enjoy pasta with red sauce, bean burritos, veggie chili and veggie burgers – these are just a few examples. It could also be a healthy way to enjoy fresh, local produce – which would be a huge boost for the whole community!

I hope you are inspired by this invitation and are willing to embrace this important, healthful program. If your schools or businesses would like to bring healthy, meatless options to your cafeterias or lunchrooms, we are all here to help. Please contact me at 520-572-0081 for more information, and together (along with Meatless Monday) we can develop a program that will suit the district’s needs!


Ana Lewis

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