At the start of the new school year in Baden-Württemberg, many children in Freiburg have to adapt to new menus on Monday. In urban primary schools and daycare centers there is only a standard vegetarian menu – this was decided by the local council of the Black Forest metropolis last October with a green-left majority. In addition, the prices for school meals will be gradually increased to counter cost increases.

“As healthy, sustainable and tasty as possible”

“This is a big change,” a city spokesman told the German Press Agency. Cooking for communal catering with many different tastes is not comparable to cooking in a normal household. The menu plans should therefore be adjusted over the course of the school year. “Our goal is to make school meals as healthy, sustainable and tasty as possible for everyone involved.”

School meals have been re-tendered by the municipality. The city works with three caterers who deliver food. “In order to prepare the caterers, we supported them with special workshops and coaching offers on the topic of vegetarian dishes,” reported the spokesman.

Parents of school children were informed about the changes to lunch, but no such letter was planned for daycare centers. Previously there were two meal options for the affected children, with meat and fish also being served.

Stuttgart Ministry of Agriculture clearly at a distance

Last year, Freiburg’s decision to introduce a standard vegetarian menu sparked a nationwide controversy about proper child nutrition. At that time, the Stuttgart Ministry of Agriculture clearly distanced itself. A balanced diet also includes meat – that was the credo of the ministry of department head Peter Hauk (CDU).

Immediately after the decision, nutrition expert Gertrud Winkler welcomed the course of the southern Baden city. “A forward-looking decision was made with regard to sustainability,” said the professor from Albstadt-Sigmaringen University.