In a time where we have immediate access to almost anything, it is nearly impossible for a school nutrition department to survive without an online menu. The lack of an interactive website and online menu could hold back a school meal program. Visualization and having data at our fingertips is everything in the food industry.
Why Go Digital?
As a school system, it is crucial to showcase your meal program with an online menu. Showcasing your meal program with an online menu is essential for a successful foodservice operation. Forget the age of printing menus that end up tossed at the end of the week! A digital menu can be repurposed used multiple times – which saves your school on printing costs. It helps increase breakfast and lunch sales by promoting meals ahead of time and also creates a convenient way for parents to pay depending on the software you select.
Parents love an online menu because they know what their kid’s options are at school. Students get excited about a digital menu because they can see pictures and have the convenience on their phone to view any time. They like seeing their daily meal options as they want to have a choice in what they eat.
With visual appearance heavily influencing our purchasing decisions, the proof is now in the virtual pudding.
Do your students have food allergies, religious dietary restrictions, or special/required diets? No problem! Digital transparency is the new currency. Menu planning software programs make it easy to steer clear of unwanted ingredients. Many programs list the nutrition facts and allergen information while hovering over a food item. This is a great resource for parents, students, school food service staff, and school nurses!
How do you move your current meal program to an online menu? First, it’s best to have a Registered Dietitian on staff or available as a consultant to help review your menu to check for food allergens and to make sure you’re compliant with the USDA regulations.
Next, you’ll want to find a USDA-approved meal planning software program to keep compliant. Here are a few affordable options that offer stock photos of food graphics:
Once you decide on the software, it will be time to build your database! Starting with ingredients, then recipes, and finishing up with menus. Often times with ONE- CLICK, your menus can be published online. Hello world!
Sound a little overwhelming or you just don’t have time?
Let Us Be Your Online Menu Experts! My K12 Resource is a team of consultants specializing in school meal programs. From menu creation to school nutrition regulations to menu planning software support to staff training – we’ve got you covered! Our services give you access to a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist experienced with the NSLP and menu compliance. We make menu creation easy with our expertise in handling special diets.
Confused on which menu planning software program to use? We’re on it! Our menu software support includes experience testing the various programs to help you select the best fit for your needs. My K12 Resource simplifies the implementation transition as well. We’ll handle the data entry for your online menu and even train and mentor your staff.