The Region 5 ESC Food Service Coop’s East Texas Food Show & Tasting was a huge hit for administrators, cafeteria employees and students alike. With vendors with food ranging from sour flavored (chile & lime) flavored raisins to cookies with educational snacks that have  states and capitals imprinted on them, this food show is not your average cafeteria fare.

Student Nutrition Services Director at Lufkin ISD, Amanda Calk, said she uses the input from these shows to make decisions on what to purchase for student lunches. She said last year, a spicy chicken leg was a hit at the show, which she then put on the menu at Lufkin Middle School and Lufkin High School.

Superintendent Lynn Torres attended the food show and was impressed with the strawberry milk that doesn’t have red food coloring in it. Mrs. Calk said that many of the food items that originally had red food coloring in them do not anymore.

Calk said, “The whole wheat pop-tarts that had red food dye in them do not anymore. They use real strawberry. This is good for our families who have issues with red food dye.”

The biggest critics at the food show were the children. One student went on and on about the applesauce. He tried every flavor including favors like Cotton Candy.

The food show is a great way to get feedback on what kids like and what parents like for their kids. It’s also refreshing to see that healthy doesn’t mean less taste. Great job to our staff for hosting this year’s show!