NYC Expands Meatless Monday to All Public Schools
On Monday, March 11, 2019 NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, Schools Chancellor Richard A. Carranza, and Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams announced that Meatless Monday will be expanded to all New York City public schools beginning in the 2019-2020 school year. Meatless Monday is a global movement encouraging everyone to cut out meat one day a week, for personal and environmental health.
In spring 2018, 15 Brooklyn schools piloted Meatless Monday, which expanded to include additional City schools in the fall. As a result of the success of the broader pilot program, Meatless Monday will now cover all NYC schools and will provide 1.1 million students with healthy, all-vegetarian breakfast and lunch menus every Monday.
“The announcement that Mayor de Blasio has expanded Meatless Monday to all New York City public schools marks a major milestone. Through this united effort, New York City’s schools take a leadership role in getting our children on a healthier track, as well as making a positive impact on our environment.” Sid Lerner, Founder, Meatless Monday Movement
The Meatless Monday pilot expansion evaluated student feedback on a broad scale. Results of the test showed that participation in meals on Mondays remained stable and the DOE decided to officially bring Meatless Mondays citywide for 2019-20. The Meatless Monday program is cost-neutral and the DOE’s Office of Food and Nutrition Services will meet with students to get feedback on the menu before it’s finalized.
Cutting back on meat a little will improve New Yorkers’ health and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. We’re expanding Meatless Mondays to all public schools to keep our lunch and planet green for generations to come.
Mayor Bill de Blasio
“Meatless Mondays are good for our students, communities, and the environment,” said Schools Chancellor Richard A. Carranza. “Our 1.1 million students are taking the next step towards healthier, more sustainable lives, and we should all follow suit. I’m looking forward to joining our schools in the Meatless Mondays movement next year!”
“Reducing our appetite for meat is one of the single biggest ways individuals can reduce their environmental impact on our planet,” said Mark Chambers, Director of the NYC Mayor’s Office of Sustainability. “Meatless Mondays will introduce hundreds of thousands of young New Yorkers to the idea that small changes in their diet can create larger changes for their health and the health of our planet.”
The announcement was made at PS 130 The Parkside, one of 15 schools that participated in the pilot program in Brooklyn. On Mondays, the school serves a variety of all-vegetarian meals including vegetarian tacos, grilled cheese, and a salad bar.
Meatless Monday builds on the City’s efforts to provide free, healthy meals to all students. This initiative will also be part of New York City’s Free School Lunch for All, which launched in the 2017-18 school year and provides free healthy breakfast and lunch to all participating New York City schools. In the 2017-18 school year, more than 150 million breakfasts and lunches were served free of charge.
Watch two excerpts about Meatless Monday in NYC schools from the documentary, “A Climate for Change: Ketchup and M&M’s”:
Schools looking to implement Meatless Monday programs can consult with our team, which includes experts from the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future.
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