Cafeteria Food Survey and Overview

Riley Walker, Staff writer

With free breakfast and lunch now being offered at Saugus High School, it looks like the winding lunch line is skyrocketing to around a twenty minute wait. It might be that the food served this year is better than previous years or it could just be because it doesn’t cost a penny.  If students are curious what foods the cafeteria is presenting to the student body, the following is an overview complete with student feedback:

In the cafeteria on Monday they serve chicken alfredo pasta with a diner roll. On Tuesday beef teriyaki with rice is served, Wednesday is a chicken burrito bowl, Thursday they serve green chili and cheese tamales, and last, but not least, on Friday there is sweet and sour chicken with rice. The food served is the same each week but it rotates daily.   

Of the thirty-four students that were surveyed anonymously, more than half complained about the food. One eleventh grader said, “It’s honestly really bad! Tastes like cardboard with salt.” When asked why many continue to eat from the cafeteria when it tastes like this, some say it’s because they’re “hungry,” or because “[the food is] free.”

There are nutritional standards that the cafeteria needs to meet, which might have changed the taste of the food that is served. The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act in 2010  reshaped the food pyramid. This act aims to keep the food more nutritious, reduce obesity, and promote better health for students. The cafeteria receives its food from the United States Department of Agriculture, USDA, which established guidelines that require school meals to contain more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Furthermore, students who don’t have much to eat at home need nourishment to keep their bodies and minds healthy. 

Two students who were interviewed gave the cafeteria a rating of six out of ten, along with a few others saying that, “[the food is] good.” Meaning that some students on campus do enjoy what the cafeteria has to offer, which explains why the lengthy lunch line never seems to shorten.