The United States Department of Agriculture posted an image of an appetizing school lunch in an effort to reverse the #ThanksMichelleObama PR disaster that has spread like wildfire on Twitter over the past 12 months.
“They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and in the digital age we have ample opportunity to document and broadcast every moment, meeting and meal,” states a blog post on the USDA website.
“We have all seen those unappetizing photos of food served at school that quickly go viral. A lonesome whole wheat bun atop a sad fish fillet; a mysterious-looking meat mixture served next to an apple. It’s natural to ask, “Is this what they serve for lunch!?” No, it’s really not.”
Well judging by the deluge of photos that have been posted since the #ThanksMichelleObama hashtag became popular, yes it really is.
The rest of the blog post offers no evidence to counter claims that the standard of school lunches is deteriorating, and instead turns into a glib promotional item for the USDA Farm to School program.
Tweets of students blaming Michelle Obama for their unappetizing lunches first emerged in 2012, although the issue really took off in November last year.
Under federal regulations introduced in the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act, which was championed by Michelle Obama, sodium levels have be kept below 1,230 milligrams for kindergarten through fifth grade, 1,360 mg for sixth to eighth grade, and 1,420 mg for ninth to 12th grade, which may explain the paucity of nutrition seen in some of the images.
Despite the First Lady’s key role in pushing the regulations, leftist websites like Snopes still claim that Michelle Obama has nothing to do with the nauseous images being tweeted out.
After the regulations went into effect from 2012-2013, over 1 million students nationwide stopped buying school lunch and 321 districts left the National School Lunch Program altogether.
Republicans are attempting to address the issue by inserting language into next year’s spending bill that would freeze further restrictions on sodium and calorie intake.
The story hit the headlines again this week when kids at a Texas high school were served bug-infested broccoli.
— Cruz4Pres – Jen (@jensan1332) May 14, 2015
“Beautiful meals like this are what’s for lunch today and every day in schools across the country,” claims the caption which accompanies the USDA photo.
That claim is strongly challenged by the endless examples of bug-infested, rotten and revolting food that continue to be tweeted out under the #ThanksMichelleObama hashtag – the latest of which can be viewed below.
Worm with your broccoli anyone? pic.twitter.com/FGe2cZBuz8
— Kyle Elliott (@kyleelliott808) May 12, 2015
— Javier Smith (@_JAVI6_) May 11, 2015
— ?taya? (@tayy014) May 12, 2015
— haley. (@violatedbieber) May 12, 2015
— Amy Peichel (@amypeichel) May 11, 2015
— Erica (@efisch11) May 13, 2015
— Rayyy (@raylon_smith00) May 14, 2015
— Jaylan Roberts (@JaylanRoberts8) May 8, 2015
— blessing bowman (@BlessingBowman) May 13, 2015
— Sean (@_seanjohn__) May 11, 2015
— /\Molly Falk/\ (@molly_falk) May 9, 2015
— DJ? (@MrBrown_Nephew) May 8, 2015
— may 16th (@mrashae_) May 8, 2015
— Daniel Furgison (@dannyfurgison) May 8, 2015
— togan.lacker (@Tacker_11) May 13, 2015
— Meg Schoenberger (@megschoenberger) May 13, 2015
— Tanner Murray (@leperchaunlarry) May 12, 2015
— Aidan (LD VP) (@ColdDiamondz) May 15, 2015