School Lunch Around the World Compared to America

  All around the world there are different standards for how students are provided lunch at school. Some countries school’s that don't allow students to bring lunch like France and Japan. While some schools don't serve lunch at all and expect kids to bring food from home like Canada. Every country has their own lunch guidelines.

  Most European countries have the same basic outlines for school lunches. Italy banned serving fried food to students in school. Lunches typically have starch like rice or pasta, at least 2 vegetables, main food being: meat, fish and fruit. Now France provides multiple courses. The first one is a starter of vegetables followed by the main dish of meat and vegetables. Next a cheese course with bread on the side. The last course is a fruit or on the last day of week a sweet. Lunch is also usually 2 hours long for both Italy and France.

  Now moving to the Asian countries. Japan has what is considered to be the healthiest school lunch. A typical lunch in Japan could have rice, grilled fish, seaweed wraps, miso soup, green tea, milk, vegetables, meat, tofu, or noodles. Students also help cook, serve, and clean after the lunches. Lunch in China  is around 40 minutes long. In China lunch usually consists of noodles, rice dumplings, steamed pork buns, soups, fruit and vegetables as well.

   In the countries in Asia and Europe school meals typically are not funded by the government. The food is funded locally and grown locally too. Food is also prepared in the school from scratch unlike America. 


  When it comes down to school lunches around the world some countries can't even compete for the best lunch. 1 country that can't compete is America. When you go to line up and get your tray you usually get 1-2 slots filled with some type of pre cooked food and the rest of the slots you have to fill with fruit and vegetables. The portions of food are typically not very big either. Lunch typically lasts between 30-45 minutes. Most food provided is frozen not made from scratch.


  In my opinion I think that school lunches in America are definitely mediocre compared to countries in europe. I think that the school boards or government should find a way to provide better meals for students. 


Do you like the current lunches the school provides?


What country's lunch would you prefer?


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  • I think that the United States could provide a healthier and better school lunch for students, especially athletes. We need more fresh foods and not processed frozen foods. Looking at all of the pictures above, the United States tray looks like the least nutritional meal. In Harlan, half of the meals we get served are either not cooked fully or too cooked to the point you can't even eat them. It seems like over the years the meals just progressively get worse. 

  • Personally, I think that we have it bad but by only looking at the picture I think Ukraine has it worse. If I got to choose which lunch I could eat I would choose Italy's food. Italy compared to the rest of the countries has a whole feast. I think that America food could be better and sometimes, for example, Harlan don't even have enough food for the students.

    • The school should definitely be able to figure how much food they need but they don't. Plus they should at least make it decent food.

  • I think that the United States should hold itself to a higher standard. Just by looking at the side-by-side comparison, you can see that all the countries have fresh fruit on their plates while we have packaged and processed fruit cups. Looking at Greece's and Italy's lunches, they have fresh meat, not chicken nuggets (this isn't to say that all of our meals have processed meat, but as I'm writing this I can't think of a school meal that has fresh meat).

  • I feel like US schools need to be better. The food that they are feeding us is unacceptable. I think that the European and Asia countries are amazing at what they are doing. The fact that their communities come together to feed the kids fresh, locally grown veggies, fruits, and slaughtered meat is awesome. I applaud them for not feeding the children fried, unhealthy food as the USA does. 

    • These contrys also have the kids help make the food they eat so they learn about nutrition.

  • I currently have been bringing my food for lunch because there are so many days of school lunch that I will not eat and I don't remember to check what is for lunch so I just bring it everyday. Based off just the pictures I would pick the USA lunch because I like chicken nuggets, however when our school serves them I do not like them because they are hard and the cookies tend to be the same also.

  • I don't like the lunch we have at our school and I think a lot of people would agree that our lunches can be unhealthy and not very good. I think it's very interesting to see the differences of lunches around the world. I would perfer lunch at Itally instead.

    • I agree that Italys lunch looks the best.

  • I do not like the lunches that the school provides, I started bringing my lunch because I didn't eat much of the school food. I also think that lunches are getting worse, the food looks bad and doesn't look real or fresh most of the time. I would eat lunches if they were healthier and fresher. 

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