Marina Patyashina about school lunches: “If somewhere they don't eat 50%, we will go there”
Rospotrebnadzor is going to assess the quality of food for schoolchildren; modernisation is promised for old food units
The number of school students dining in the school canteen has increased in Tatarstan. In Kazan alone, the increase was 14,000 people. In total, almost 210,000 primary school students were provided with free hot meals, according to the instructions of the president of Russia, the ministry of education and science of the Republic of Tatarstan reported. But the questions with the organization of food, its quality and other problems still remain. Read the details in the material of Realnoe Vremya.
6 billion for junior school lunches
Today, 209,000 students from 1st to 4th grades receive free hot meals in Tatarstan schools. According to the head of Tatarstan ministry of education, Ilsur Khadiullin, lunches for four months of the school year cost of 860 million rubles, of which 58% — federal funds, the rest — republican. In general, almost 6 billion rubles will be allocated for these purposes for 3 years.
Food for school children is prepared in 1,763 food units in 1,403 general education organisations — this includes branches and detached buildings. However, according to the results of the inventory conducted by the ministry of education and Rospotrebnadzor, today not all of them are equipped with the necessary modern equipment, for example, to heat porridge or cutlet to the desired temperature — not lower than 65 degrees. Besides, not all canteens have enough seats. Therefore, some of the food units will be updated.
“We are currently developing a road map for modernisation," Ilsur Khadiullin explained. “A total of 217 schools. Today, this list is being approved by all municipalities of the republic and in three departments — we, ministry of construction and Rospotrebnadzor. I want to say that if our schools were not ready to receive children by September 1, the Rospotrebnadzor service would not accept school canteens. Modernisation will also be carried out as part of improving the conditions for organising the work of food units. There is an update of equipment, minor repairs, some redevelopment without reconstruction, otherwise it is too much money and it will take more time to agree. All these issues are under the strict control of the president of our republic.”
The dishes that are offered for breakfast or lunch in schools are prepared by 16 specialised companies. At the same time, they serve only 265 schools in 17 municipalities, and 85% of schools organise meals independently. The menu in school canteens is usually calculated for two weeks, and taking into account the seasonality — autumn-spring and winter, according to the ministry of education and Rospotrebnadzor. Every parent can get acquainted with it by visiting the website of the ministry of education and science or the school. .
Rospotrebnadzor will look in the trash of school canteens
The quality of children's nutrition is the responsibility of Rospotrebnadzor. Each year the authority conducts a review of 500-600 schools. However, from this year, unscheduled inspections will be carried out until the end of May in all schools of the republic, where there are junior classes.
The inspectors intend to carefully study what children eat, how food is prepared and stored. Inspections have already begun in the second half of October: employees of the supervisory authority have tasted dishes in almost 410 schools — just over a quarter of the total. As a result, 220 violations have been identified. According to the head of Rospotrebnadzor in Tatarstan, Marina Patyashina, they “are of ongoing nature”: the regime of equipment washing, kitchen utensils and glassware with which children eat is not implemented, hot meals colder the established norm in 65 degree, there is no marking on the products, there are cases of non-compliance with commercial neighbourhood in refrigerators, for example, when raw meat is lying next to butter.
A new parameter from this year in assessing the quality of food will be the coefficient of uneaten meals, the index of which was developed by the federal Rospotrebnadzor. As explained by Patyashina, for this purpose, a trash can is weighed, that is, the volume of uneaten food by children is taken as a basis at the rate of 100 people. According to the results of the first checks, on average, she said, the coefficient, so to speak, of “inedible” dishes was 20%.
“What we will come to by the end of the school year and what will be the indicator for the country — these checks are carried out in all regions of the Russian Federation, we will see: whether children eat school meals better or worse. Then we can give a description. If we see that in some schools this coefficient is 10%, and in some schools it is 50%, then we will come to where it is 50. Because this is a big question for catering. And if the food is cold, tasteless, sticky pasta or porridge with lumps, then this should not be," said Patyashina.
By the way, the inspectors will come not only to schools but also to nine major suppliers of food to schools and 16 food operators.
Rospotrebnadzor conducted a survey of parents and students of 100 schools in 35 municipalities of Tatarstan. According to Marina Patyashina, only 62% of children always have breakfast at home before going to school, and almost 6% do not eat at home at all in the morning At the same time, the so-called fast food — chips and other food waste — is consumed daily by more than 13% of the surveyed schoolchildren. As a result, unhealthy diet increased the number of children under 14 years of age who are obese — for 3 years by more than 1,500 people, or 40%. And this is a direct road to diseases related to the cardiovascular and endocrine system (diabetes, insulin resistance) and the musculoskeletal system.
There is no shortage of chefs, there is staff turnover
One of the problems voiced during the briefing was the increased load on food operators. The department of food and social nutrition of Kazan is considered one of the largest in the republic. According to its head, Rima Mukhamedshina, “the number of Kazan schoolchildren who eat increased by 14,000 compared to last year due to the growth in the number of children and the programme for providing free hot meals to junior classes (69,500 students from grades 1 to 4)".
About 52 rubles are allocated daily from the federal and regional budgets for each student. This price includes a cold dish (salad or vegetables in portions), main course (meat, poultry, fish), side dish, bread, hot drink and fruit several times a week.
To ensure timely and high-quality meals for schoolchildren, the department had to purchase new equipment and modernise a number of school canteens. As part of the WorldSkills 2019 legacy, 550 items of inventory and equipment were transferred to 80 Kazan schools.
However, the personnel issue remains unresolved. According to Mukhamedshina, “by this school year, we managed to staff school canteens at 92%". Cooks and kitchen workers do not really want to go to work for 11,500 rubles with an increased load on them. In turn, the minister of education decided to clarify that about 4,000 people work in canteens of schools and “there is no shortage of cooks, there is a turnover of staff”.
But the department heard the wishes of many parents and from October included hot soup with meatballs in the school menu. Only no longer on a free basis, but for 16 rubles. In general, the list of dishes that the department provides to the capital's schools includes 153 names of dishes. By the way, parents can not only try what they feed their children at school, but also make their own adjustments to the school menu. To do this, contact the school management or write a request on the website of the ministry of education.
Since the new year, new sanitary regulations and standards have been introduced in the food of schoolchildren, according to which mayonnaise, vinegar, cream cakes and other unhealthy foods, including makarony po-flotski, should be excluded from the menu. They, in principle, are not on the school menu today.
“Is makarony po-flotski a harmful food?" the minister of education asked the head of Rospotrebnadzor with bewilderment.
“The thing is that they contain minced meat, which is a perishable product containing a large number of microorganisms. And if you cook it incorrectly or overdo the finished dish, and it must be distributed within two hours, if this time is extended, then this dish will become a dangerous food for those who eat it. Therefore, although makarony po-flotski is considered, of course, a delicious dish, but we should not experiment on the health of our children," concluded the chief sanitary doctor of the republic.