Mel Brown, an elementary school teacher, knows firsthand how important it is for young students to enjoy a healthy, balanced breakfast every morning full of fresh veggies. She shared with us why the slogan for her school’s breakfast program is “full belly, full effort” and how fresh greenhouse veggies are an essential part of the program.

As an elementary school principal, I often hear some funny expressions from our young students. Recently, during our breakfast service, a first-grade student asked me, “Madame, what kind of candies are these?”. There was, of course, no candy. Instead, the student held up a fresh, bright red cherry tomato.

This is only one example of how our students have shown their love for healthy options as a part of our breakfast program. It goes to show that fresh snacking veggies can compete with processed sweets when kids are given the opportunity to make that choice.

Thanks to Pure Flavor®, our school has been able to include Mini Munchies® full of nutritious snacking tomatoes and cocktail cucumbers as part of our regular menu. For so many students, these healthy snacking veggies are a delicious part of their breakfast, and they often request a second bag for their lunch!

Since the beginning of the pandemic, our breakfast program has continued to grow and today about 350 students participate every morning. The program offers kids a balanced, nutritious meal to start their day, complete with a grain (bagged cereal, bagel, melba toast, granola bar), protein (cheese, yogurt), fruit (pears, apples, bananas, clementines) and healthy snacking veggies.

While we are partially funded by the Ontario Student Nutrition Program, as well as an additional grant from President’s Choice Children’s Charity, we rely on community donations to ensure that we can operate from the first day of school to the last. Pure Flavor® has been a long-time supporter of our breakfast program, as well as our Cooking Club, which teaches students to create their own healthy meals. We simply couldn’t offer the rich selection of healthy snacking veggies our kids need without their support. 

Girl in school with mini munchies bag

It can sometimes be challenging to find fresh vegetables in the winter that have the same consistency and quality as in the summer, but Pure Flavor® grows in greenhouse year-round, so the quality is always great no matter the season. This means we can offer nutritious veggies to our students every day of the school year, and they can enjoy their favorite fresh veggies every morning.

Before the pandemic, students would enter the school and pick their favorite options from our breakfast carts in the main hallway. Now, breakfast delivery is made classroom to classroom, and all food must be pre-packaged. Mini Munchies® are perfect because these healthy snacking veggies come in individually sealed bags for each student. They are safe, convenient, and colorful – plus, they’re designed with fun characters kids love!

We know that breakfast is an incredibly important meal for our students. As educators, we want to ensure that every student has nutritious breakfast options first thing in the morning that can fuel them throughout the day. Pure Flavor’s® snacking tomatoes and cucumbers are a perfect fit in our school menu.

We have a slogan we use when speaking about the need for our breakfast program – “full belly, full effort”. We know that students can’t perform the way they need to if they haven’t started the day with a healthy meal. Because of generous contributors like Pure Flavor®, we’re able to ensure that our students have what they need to give their best effort all day long!