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Passion drives PURPOSE! Child Nutrition Summit impact and lessons learned.

Summer is time to sit on the porch, review, reflect...and of course RELAX at the Pisanick household. Coming off of the high of the May 2018 Child Nutrition Summit it is a much needed time to sharpen the saw, and really digest all of the wonderful connections and experiences that the event gave life to. The overwhelming feeling that continues to resonate with our family both at home and in our work family is one of GRATITUDE. It is this feeling that fuels our PASSION and purpose, and ultimately lands us in the blessed position to help influence child nutrition programs to commit to a better tomorrow for our students.

The three pillars of the event also give us an opportunity to reflect, remember and celebrate, but also to inspire, plan, and commit to an even better version of our mission in the upcoming 2018-2019 school year.

First, LOCAL and SUSTAINABLE initiatives were not only highlighted, but have also served as the stepping stones to bridge new opportunities for the future. Just today, PPLLC met to discuss a brand new pilot of food rescue and re-purpose in partnership with Perfectly Imperfect Produce and Produce Packaging Inc in one of our local districts. We have also continued to gain momentum through Farm Fare and the Feed our Future Harvest of the Month to develop menus and communication strategies to highlight local foods featured on our menus. All this is accomplished in a virtual menu platform for complete MENU TRANSPARENCY and a means to educate our parents and communities while nourishing our students.

Second, CLEAN LABEL product sourcing and menu development have been in full effect at the PPLLC headquarters. While some may enjoy their time out of the kitchens, we are elbow deep in food sampling, menu creation, and yes CHEF meetings to better equip our team with resources to help all of our clients. Never settling for the "status quo" in our menu development, we are pushing critical conversations to help gain access to better foods for our programs through our distributors, and are consulting with the savvy expertise of our chef partners to bring these products to life in recipes that schools CAN DO within budget and time constraints for the masses.

Last but not least, GLOBAL ON TREND flavors studied at the Child Nutrition Summit by 70 of our closest food service friends, and of course our favorites...the students - continue to amaze and challenge us. David, a senior at Sheffield Brookside High School said it best - "There are so many options for us to eat better without sacrificing flavor". Now if that isn't a call to action I don't know what is!! He was also thrilled to see plantains as an option for schools as a reflection of culturally diverse menu choices that meet the needs of our melting pot society vs. the same old "boring typical food items like pizza". Look out for more spice, new flavor infusions with middle eastern flare, and "out of the box" bar concepts coming your way from our team. We are pumped to rise to the call and help meet our consumers ever savvy taste expectations in the child nutrition programs we serve!

As summer often is, our off season time of renewal is fleeting. But trust us...we are using every second to not only renew and reflect but also PLAN OUR PURPOSE which is serving all of you!

"Somewhere over the rainbow...Where dreams that you dare to dream do come true!" - Child Nutrition Summit 2018

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