The Cobb County School District’s Food & Nutrition Services division recently received a Best Practices Award for its healthy vending program by Horizon Software International, a food services software provider. The division started a pilot for the program, installing pairs of vending machines at Wheeler and Campbell high schools to gauge student interest in quick, healthy options for lunch and snacks. Stocked with sub sandwiches, salads, fruit and juices, the machines are designed to accommodate students’ on-the-go schedules and offer alternatives to the usual fare.
Nicole Dial, Food & Nutrition supervisor for Campbell High School said, “Students really like it because it’s easy and offers lots of variety. Parents have been equally receptive, liking the healthier food options being offered to students.” The vending machines have also benefitted the mainstream food service operations at both schools, boosting participation and helping students spend less time in line and more time eating and relaxing during lunch.
With the inital success of the healthy vending program, Food & Nutrition Services has expanded into a total of seven schools, with 10 machines serving students.