Which Foods Will Pass the Taste Test for Students?

March 25, 2016


Contact: Tammy Dodderidge, communications manager, (913) 279-2225

Will fresh fruits and vegetables be all the rage? Or will waffles be the most popular food item? The answer will come on Thursday, March 31 when hundreds of students attend the Taste of 500 food tasting fair hosted by the Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools. The event will take place from noon to 1:45 p.m. at F.L. Schlagle High School.

Now in its 19th year, the Taste of 500 brings together students from across the district to sample food items from a number of food service brokers. The students provide their feedback using a simple scoring technique. Positive responses are then considered for next year’s school breakfast and/or lunch menus.

 “This past year, we taste tested a real popular macaroni and cheese, which tested much higher than any other mac and cheese product we have looked at in the past,” said Josh Mathiasmeier, director of Nutritional Services. “And now it’s on our menu.”

Mathiasmeier said he is particularly interested to see how samples of fruits and vegetables will fare at the event. This year, his department received a USDA grant to implement a Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program in 16 KCKPS elementary schools. Through the program, students take part in a taste test of fresh, and usually unique, fruits and vegetables, twice a week. It increases their exposure to new and healthy food items.

More than 600 students are expected to pass through the line of food vendors at Taste of 500 this year. Some of the items that will be available for sampling include: star fruit, jicama sticks, popped crisps, maple waffle, cheese stuffed pretzel, smothered burrito, naked juice, bulk taco snack, cheese calzone and mini cini’s.

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Melissa Fears • Communications Office
2010 N. 59th Street • Kansas City, KS 66104 • 913-279-2242