We're Rethinking School Lunch

We start with the USDA guidelines and then take it up a notch! Phil Mickelson once said. “The more I practice the luckier I get.” I have been told how lucky I am to have a marketing program like we do. Luck had nothing to do with it.

From the beginning we recognized our need for a strong, long term brand to market healthier, fresher products. We wanted to emphasize health, taste, freshness, quality, value, variety, and nutritional resources. As a result, we implemented our new Real.Fresh logo during our 2006-07 school year.

Following the Principles of Marketing from the beginning - product, place, promotion, price, people, positioning and packaging, we are benefiting from the rewards of consistency and a long term vision. We tailored our marketing and products to meet the wants and specific desires of our students. By removing our ala carte, serving healthier lunches with higher quality products, creating a vending program with healthy snacks, we increased our participation by 300%.

In promoting our Real.Fresh program, we wrapped our delivery and service vehicles with all new signage, added our new logo to our district scoreboards, eating areas, drinking fountains, menus, uniforms, umbrellas on school site eating areas, barbeques, and created new food packaging for our entrees, fruits and vegetables.

We continue to advance our brand, our service, our quality, and our menus. We continue to secure more of our customers, which increases participation and revenue.

Success in marketing is not about good luck. It is about really understanding what marketing

means. It is not making people buy what you want to sell, but rather making what people want to buy. Taking a long term view of how you intend to serve students, staying focused, growing with your market, and most importantly not trying to be everything to everybody.

The last eleven years is a testament to a great program, but also a testament to good marketing.

TUSD Director of Child Nutrition Scott Soiseth is flanked (l-r) by Janey Thornton, Deputy Under Secretary for Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Services and Zenobia Barlow, executive director of the Center for Ecoliteracy.

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