Schools are not trattorias

School canteens or trattorias? From the survey The Italians and the new agriculture conducted by the monthly Expansion in collaboration with Interactive Market Research it emerges that, for meals in schools, the great majority of Italians would like their children to be served fresh food cooked directly at school, a mode now abandoned given that school canteens they are not hot tables and have neither cooks nor kitchens.

However, the same interviewees in the family consume quietly, and several times a week frozen foods. The responses collected (1000 people between 18 and 65 years) also highlight other contradictions, such as those who declare themselves willing to give up meat and go to fast food regularly, but it is theschool feeding the totem of prejudices.

The point is that in the collective imagination a dish prepared and cooked at the moment is good, if it arrives ready it arouses suspicion. But are we really sure that this is the case? Given that schools are not restaurants and the attendants are not chefs, a lucid examination of the problem makes us understand that the truth is the opposite: plus collective lunch it is technologically advanced, from the preparation to the administration of meals, and the quality guarantees are greater. And leaving behind some clichés could do even better.

An example led him Giuliano Gaiba of Elior, a leading company in collective catering, at the conference Science in the Field last November 30th. “Thinking about school canteens, in Italy the local health authorities ask for different menus in each city, and require us to produce them with the so-called a technology warm bond, which means that we must deliver them hot within one hour of cooking. It would be preferable to be able to adopt the cold bond, as happens throughout Europe: meals cooked in this way are cooled in the freezer immediately after their preparation, keeping the organoleptic properties intact, and then reheated in schools. An advantage for the environment, given that the hot link has energy costs, which also avoids the risk that, perhaps due to a traffic jam, the meal will arrive late and overcooked ".

The question is a must: why not? The problem is cultural, we are led to see a risk in technology, and in this we are wrong. Antonio Pascale, agronomist and writer, known to the television audience for his participation in the show the Barbarian Invasions, said it thus at the conference: “We are victims of a nostalgic knowledge, according to which everything that is present is corrupt, everything that comes from the past is good. But no one would apply this equation to medicine, for example: we all want to be treated in the most technologically advanced clinic: why don't we think so when it comes to agriculture and nutrition? "

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