Each food has unique characteristics that affect how it is perceived and received. For children, features such as bright colour, distinct flavour, soft or crunchy texture, and sweetness contribute to appeal and palatability. Foods selected for our menus must satisfy criteria for optimum acceptance by each age group. Attention to selection, preparation, and presentation emphasizes the attractive and nutritive qualities of fresh food.
Food as security
As defined, food security is "the state in which all people, at all times, have access to safe, nutritious, and personally acceptable food by means that maintain human dignity". A child knowing from experience while at child care that foods are flavourful and well prepared, feels trust and comfort in a familiar mealtime experience.
Food as adventure
A secure child will confidently try new foods resulting in exposure to a variety of foods and meals of different cultures thus accomplishing both nutrition and sociological objectives.
The Four Food Groups
GRAIN PRODUCTS Menus include a variety of fresh baked whole wheat products; bagels, rolls, breads, cereals and pasta and rice.
VEGETABLES Selected for their colour and shape are fresh leafy greens (Romaine, iceberg, Endive, green and red leaf lettuces and spinach), carrots, green and yellow beans, cucumbers, broccoflower, cauliflower, green and purple broccoli, tomatoes (field, Roma, cherry and red and yellow teardrop), green and purple cabbage, celery, red and white new potatoes, sweet peppers (green, red, yellow) snow peas and sugar snaps.
FRUIT Carefully chosen for quality, served at the peak of flavour and ripeness are plums, watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew, blueberries, apples (5 varieties), peaches, nectarines, pears, grapes, pineapple, naval oranges, strawberries, bananas, mandarines, apricots, Kiwi, mangos, and pink grapefruit.
MILK PRODUCTS Delivered daily to ensure freshness, our specifications include; milk (2%, homogenized, Lactaid, Goat) and cheeses (Swiss, cheddar, mozzarella, Parmesan) cream cheese and cottage cheese as well as milk alternates such as Rice Dream and soya beverage.
MEAT AND ALTERNATIVES With an interest in freshness we prepare freshly ground beef, chicken, sliced meats (chicken bologna, turkey), and alternates (fish sticks, eggs, peas, beans, lentils) for our menus.