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Whitsons Culinary Group Engages Students with a Focus on Healthy Food


Whitsons Culinary Group, a provider of fresh nutrition services for public schools throughout the Northeast, is committed to serving wholesome foods that taste great.  Whitsons’ culinary team is focused on preparing meals using ingredients that are locally sourced, minimally processed, from all natural, and organic or non-GMO, whenever available, all while providing students with culinary education opportunities to promote healthy eating habits.


“Our back to basics approach to school nutrition has enabled us to get to the heart of what matters to our student customers when it comes to food.” said Richard Sandmann, Executive Chef New England Region and Culinary Innovation Specialist at Whitsons School Nutrition, “Serving wholesome great tasting food, and teaching students about food and nutrition, sets the stage for them to enjoy more enriching educational experiences around the foods they eat.”

The company’s latest food and nutrition education programs include:


Chef Trek®, which is a unique food and nutrition education initiative developed by Whitsons to introduce locally-sourced and flavorful fruits and vegetables to young palettes and inspire life-long, healthy eating habits. As part of the program, professional chefs conduct interactive food demos in school cafeterias and educate students about sound eating habits in a fun and entertaining way. Food samplings and tastings are an interactive and effective method for creating an awareness of new meals, and fresh, seasonal food offerings to students.  The program also incorporates a range of food and nutrition marketing tools such as activity sheets highlighting the nutritious foods showcased in the tasting, recipe cards and live discussions and Q&A sessions with the chef on health and wellness. Chef Trek events are hosted on an ongoing basis across all of Whitsons’ locations and they show students where their food comes from and how healthy foods are prepared.


Chefology 101® was created by Whitsons School Nutrition Team as a way to introduce young students to cooking with different natural ingredients, creating healthy recipes, and learning kitchen safety. Students in this program are able to share what they have learned with their families and promote healthy eating and cooking practices at home.


Nutrition Safari® is an award-winning nutrition awareness program for elementary students that makes food and nutrition education fun through “spokes-animal” characters that represent the foods groups and reinforce healthy eating and physical activity as part of a healthy lifestyle.


What’s Your Fooditude®? is a secondary schools meals promotion program based around students’ attitudes towards food. With Fooditude, students embark on a movement towards developing positive self-esteem and healthy eating habits by making a connection between positive attitudes towards food and being healthy. Signage, serving line designs, and fun, colorful graphics, show kids doing ‘real things’ that make them happy and feel good and work in conjunction to complement healthy food offerings. It’s all about making the connection between healthy foods and eating habits.  Flaves is the newest portion of the program for the 2017-18 school year, this will focus on different types of cuisines, select chefs (such as celebrity chef Emily Peterson) and their featured recipes.  Top Whitsons chefs recently completed in an ‘Iron-Chef’ style completion to be the face of the Flaves-Bombay Indian cuisine component of Flaves for the upcoming school year.


“It is our responsibility to find ways to integrate nutritious meals into our menu’s without sacrificing taste,” said Sandmann. “Our culinary events help us do that and also bring the topic of locally sourced foods to life in a way that will resonate with students. Whitsons believes that all children should be made aware of healthy food options. Our food and nutrition events are important because some of the students we serve have never been introduced to foods like kale. This is an opportunity for them to try new, healthy foods,” said Sandmann at Whitsons School Nutrition. “Whitsons is excited to be at the forefront of school food and nutrition programs. We have been implementing chefs to school’s events for over twelve years now and we look forward to building on our successes and expanding the food and nutrition education programs even further.”



About Whitsons Culinary Group

Whitsons Culinary Group provides a wide range of highly customized dining services to public schools, with a strong focus on nutritious, high quality meals made from wholesome, fresh ingredients. Whitsons has a long and proud history of excellence and growth since 1979 and is setting new standards for the foodservice industry with wholesome foods and family values.

For more information, please visit www.whitsons.com or find us on Facebook or Twitter