Celebrating School Lunch

We're thrilled to have everyone back to school as we head into October when we can all celebrate National School Lunch Week! This year NSLW is scheduled for October 11-15 and we're just wild about it.

Fun fact! NSLW was created by President John F. Kennedy in 1962 to highlight the importance of nutritious school meals and their role in a child's life both in and out of the classroom.

Performance Food Service Minute

Highlighting Free Meals for Kids

Darin' Erin Cofiell with our local Performance Food Group crew recently caught up with our Director of Marketing, Cassie Fraser, and resident Food Service Director, Sama Hayyat, at Rice Memorial High School in Burlington, VT. Sama expertly oversees Rice, Christ the King, and St. Francis Xavier Schools, as well as the Winooski School District schools. We're always ready to jump at the chance to share our excitement in another school year's worth of free meals!

We wanted to take this opportunity to remind you and your school communities that all students 18 and under are eligible for a free breakfast and a free lunch at school, regardless of family income. There are no prerequisites for free meals. The removal of financial barriers for our students and their families is so important to ensure they reap the benefits of nutritious school meals!

National Vegetarian Month

October is National Vegetarian Month and October 1st is World Vegetarian Day! We're celebrating all month long with Meatless Mondays in our cafeterias. Vegetarian diets are increasing in popularity due to a variety of factors that include growing concerns around climate change and animal welfare, cultural beliefs, and personal choice.

There are several types of vegetarian diets, but in the broadest sense of the word, it is a plant-based diet. Other types of vegetarian diets include:
 Lacto-vegetarian: A diet that excludes meats, fish, poultry, and eggs along with foods that contain them. Dairy products (i.e. milk, cheese, yogurt, and butter) are included.
Lacto-ovo vegetarian: A diet that excludes meats, fish and poultry, but includes dairy and eggs.
Ovo-vegetarian: A diet that excludes meats, fish, poultry, and dairy, but includes eggs.
Pescatarian: A diet that excludes meats, poultry, dairy, and eggs, but includes fish.
Vegan: A diet that excludes meat, fish, poultry, dairy, and eggs, along with all food products that contain any animal by-products. 

Some people may also follow a semivegetarian, or more commonly called a flexitarian, diet which is mostly a plant-based diet that includes meats, poultry, fish, dairy, and eggs either on occasion or in small amounts. At the end of the day, our diets can include as much or as little variety as we desire as long as it's balanced and meeting our nutritional needs! 

Did you know? We post new recipes to try at home that include the Harvest of the Month on the first of each month, many of which are suitable for vegetarians. You can find them by going to your school's Abbey Group nutrition website and clicking on "Harvest of the Month" under the "Menus" tab!

Food Service Spotlight

This month we at HQ wanted to take a moment to recognize our amazing School Food Service Operations & Logistics, Purchasing & Procurement, and Menu Planning team that is made up of the dynamic duo Connie Burleson (right) and Cheryle Slayton (left). Combined they have been with The Abbey Group for nearly 35 years! They are a huge driving force behind our successful flow of food service operations across our accounts. If there is a hat to be worn, they wear it!

In addition to their day-to-day work, Cheryle and Connie have also been working tirelessly this summer and fall to bring a new POS system, TITAN, to many of our accounts. This is a task that, while daunting, these two made look easy. We're so thankful for all that they do, for their unquestionable dedication to the people we serve, and to our Abbey Group family!

Do you know of a food service employee going above and beyond? Did a recent meal knock your socks off? We want you to tell us about it! In our coming newsletters, we will feature our employees, schools, communities, events, etc. that are demonstrating our commitment to fresh! Nominate someone or something for public kudos by e-mailing our Director of Marketing, Cassie Fraser, at with a photo and why they deserve some extra special recognition.

Stay tuned for our November issue where we will update you on our latest happenings and highlight our exciting new "Elect Your Meal" campaign.

This institution is an equal opportunity provider.
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6212 VT Route 105, Enosburg Falls, VT 05450  |  1-800-696-4748  |

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The Abbey Group · 6212 Vt Route 105 · Enosburg Falls, VT 05450-9742 · USA

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