Spartanburg Co. District 6 offering students healthy, organic meals

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SPARTANBURG COUNTY, S.C. (WSPA) – Some Upstate students are getting organic options in their school cafeteria.

Kicking off the school year, Spartanburg County School District 6 is partnering with Walnut Grove Farm to help give their students a more healthy and nutritious option when it comes to meat.

From the pasture to your child’s plate, beef from these cows has more nutritional value than the standard grocery store option.

“They spend their entire life cycle on grass, they’re fed a variety of foods and feeds throughout the year to stay healthy and stay strong,” said Will Carnes.

Farm manager Will Carnes said they’re excited by a new partnership with Spartanburg County’s District 6.

“We’re excited to put healthy beef in front of the kids and give them an option that will get them excited about eating a good, healthy, nutritious lunch to take on their day,” he said.

This isn’t the first step the district has taken towards a healthier meal.

“We’ve implemented our own organic farm where we grow our fruits and vegetables. And the next logical step there was to partner with a local farm doing pasture-raised beef,” said Ron Jones.

Jones, Director of Food and Nutrition for the district, said organic foods do cost the district a little more, but the price of a meal for students hasn’t changed.

“We do believe that it’s the right way to feed our children in District 6. As far as our relationship here with beef, we’ve made it very cost effective,” he said.

He said it’s completely worth it.

“Obviously, the nutritional quality is greater and, also, it reduces the carbon footprint that is created by this global food chain that we are a part of,” said Jones.

On top of being fresher, Jones said they don’t have to worry about any issues with the beef.

“When there’s a national beef recall, we’re not going to have to worry about it because we know right where our product came from,” he said.

He said the beef will be used in their ground beef recipes like tacos, nachos, and meatloaf.

“The saturated fat is going to be less in this product than what we’d buy commercially,” said Jones.

He said it’s part of a commitment to provide quality food for their students. Jones said to start off the school year, they’re going to be using the farm’s beef at least once a week. Throughout the year, the district will be beefing up their options.

The district said this is a partnership that both students and families are happy about.

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