Looking at the images of American lunches, it is apparent that the US school lunch program is in dire need of an overhaul. Here's hoping the recently passed Healthy, Hunger Free Kids Act that eliminates junk food and restrict fat and calories in meals affects some positive change, granting kids access to healthy, delicious lunches at school.
In this NPR slideshow, images of school lunches from around the world convey a variety of approaches to feeding children, informed by both economic resources and cultural beliefs about nutrition. These images also make me consider the "syntax" of a meal and how it varies based on location, a concept first introduced to me in an Anthropology of Food class that I took in college. A syntax would describe the various components, for example a starchy carb, a vegetable, a meat, a sweet, etc. For me, a properly constructed meal has to have something green. That is non negotiable. One of my favorite parts of being an adult is having the freedom to construct and concoct meals to my choosing.
Also, given the choice, I'd lunch in Saint Etiennes, France, any day.