Domino’s Pizza announced on Jan. 17 that they are, “striving to be a part of the solution,” as they launched their new Domino’s Smart Slice school lunch program. (http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/dominos-pizza-launches-dominos-smart-slice-school-lunch-pizza-program-113912129.html) The Smart Slice was specifically developed to meet the new federal guidelines for school lunch programs. It is already being served in more than 120 school districts and they plan to double that number within the next year.
Cindy Haren, CEO of Western Dairy Association, whose organization worked with the franchise and the schools in partnership with the National Dairy Council to develop the new pizza, says, “The development of Domino’s Smart Slice shows how collaboration among dairy farmers, schools, processors, and major food brands like Domino’s can result in healthier, flavorful, and fresh school food choices for our children.”
So it seems that bread topped with tomato sauce and fake cheese is now seen as the epitome of healthful food for school children. Parents who have the resources will be able to provide better lunches for their children, but the real tragedy is that the poorest children are already the ones who suffer the highest rates of obesity and they are the ones who are most likely to depend on free meals provided by the schools. If the “solution” to childhood obesity is low-fat pizza, the new guidelines are certainly going to make the problem worse, not better.