_By Amber Hensley, Guest Editor
Photos by Jim Ezell, EZ Event Photography, courtesy of SNA, except where indicated_
Each year at the School Nutrition Association’s Child Nutrition Industry Conference, directors in attendance have the opportunity to learn about some of the newest products available to the school foodservice industry. This year thirty manufacturers showcased new product and program innovations that are currently in development or have been introduced to the school market within the past year. Samples of these products are highlighted below.
New Snack & Sip from Kraft Foodservice pairs a nutritional snack, such as BARNUM’S ANIMAL Crackers, LORNA DOONE Shortbread Cookies or RITZ Bits Cheese Sandwiches with a CAPRI SUN 100% Juice. These ready-to-serve snack options meet requirements for USDA Afterschool Snack reimbursement. Snack & Sip is also great for field trips and concession stands.
Kellogg’sÂ® Food Away From Home introduced new Rice KrispiesÂ® Apple Cinnamon and Cocoa KrispiesÂ® Chocolate Chewy Cereal Bars. Part of a complete breakfast, these portable snacks keep Snap, Crackle and Pop in students’ breakfast routineâ€”or whenever they have the craving. These bars provide a wholesome snack that meets nutritional requirements. Made with 1 bread serving, each bar provides a good source of fiber, contains at least 9g whole grain/serving, and 0g Trans fat.
General Mills introduced Pillsbury Frudelâ„¢â€”a warm, filled strudel stick available in apple or cherry. Each Pillsbury Frudel is individually wrapped in a heat-and-serve pouch that can be placed in the oven directly from the freezer, allowing operators to serve fresh-from-the-oven in less than 10 minutes. Each pouch is 2-bread equivalents and offers 16 grams of whole grains per serving.
Attendees had the opportunity to get a sneak peek at new UNCLE BEN’SÂ® School Flavored Rice products to be introduced this summer. New flavors include Taco Flavored Pinto Beans & Brown Rice, Santa Fe Style Black Beans & Brown Rice, Honey BBQ Red Beans & Brown Rice, Broccoli & Cheddar Brown Rice, and Tomato & Herb Brown Rice.
The new rice products are 100% whole grain and lower sodium to meet strict nutritional guidelines. They are allergen free of peanut, fish, shellfish, eggs and wheat; and three of the items offer a good source of fiber with 4g of fiber per 1 cup per cooked serving.
Tyson Foods, Inc.
Tyson Foods shared its efficient process of turning USDA A704 fresh beef into backyard-quality burgers, faster and fresher to help directors stretch entitlement dollars. Tyson Foods is the only company currently allowed by the USDA to procure beef directly from the source.
â€˜We continually invest in innovation to help operators in their business,â€™ said Johnny Hughes, vice president of noncommercial sales, Tyson Foods, Inc. â€˜Our innovative approach to beef helps them streamline the process by using only fresh, never frozen raw materials. Our fresh approach to beef removes non-value added steps from the process. Tyson charbroiled mini burgers are kid tested, kid approved and deliver backyard charbroiled flavor.â€™
The â€˜5-2-1â€™ process means that TysonÂ® burgers are made fresher and in as little as five days. Five days from harvest to processing, two hours to process into burgers and frozen only one time.
Commodity substitutable Tyson burger varieties include Charbroiled Burgers and Mini-Burgers, Charbroiled Patties and Flavored Charbroiled Burgers.