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Slow Food potlucks to lobby for more school lunch money

September 3, 2009 |  8:13 am

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Looking for an alternative to another round of hot dogs and chips on Labor Day? Slow Food USA’s school lunch campaign, Time for Lunch, has half a dozen potluck “eat-ins” scheduled around Los Angeles. The idea is to get Congress to commit additional money to the National School Lunch Program; 30 million children eat school lunches every day in the United States, and some people don’t think the food is good enough.

Nearly 300 events are scheduled Monday around the country. Eat-ins are planned in 30 California cities; in Los Angeles, they’ll be in Highland Park, Culver City, Hollywood, Elysian Park and elsewhere.

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Josh Viertel, the president of Slow Food USA, called the event “a virtual march on Washington. It will be a day when America shares food it believes in and demands real food for our children.” Slow Food, which has had a reputation as a “foodie” organization, is connecting with people in neighborhoods it has never been, he said.

School lunch funding is part of the Child Nutrition Act, legislation that is up for reauthorization this year. For every free lunch served at schools, the federal government pays a reimbursement of about $2.68.

-- Mary MacVean

(Photos from a preview eat-in in Chicago on Aug. 26, by Jenn Smith and the Meetup Eat Local Chicago)

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