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Food

BALANCED AND HEALTHY MENUS

At BFIS we like to provide a balanced diet of different food groups, with a preference for seasonal products and local production. Menu planning includes different sectors of the community: kitchen head, school administrators, and parents. Our school menus are designed to meet nutritional recommendations regarding daily needs of different nutrients and the principles of the Mediterranean diet.

We not only have an unquestionable commitment to offer a varied, balanced, and healthy diet, but also to control safety and hygiene, and environmental impact. Saned, our lunch services provider, also has a solid team specialized in nutrition and a pedagogic team that ensures the smooth running of the service and oversees the work in dietary, hygiene, social, and behavioral habits.

OUR OWN KITCHEN
MONTHLY MENUS

June 2019

FAQ

How are the menus created? What is key when designing the menus?

The menus are prepared according to a varied and balanced diet. SANED (BFIS' lunch service provider) has a research team and nutritionists that design varied healthy menus with different options for vegetarians and people with food allergies.

The monthly menu is confirmed by the school, taking into account the preferences of the majority of the families. The most important things are the quality of the products and that the menu is healthy, nutritious and varied.

Is everything cooked at school or is the food already processed when it arrives to the school?

Everything is cooked at school. The food arrives unprocessed to BFIS and the menu is prepared in the school kitchen. The vegetables and fruits are fresh and bought locally.

Bread dough is not made at school; it comes straight from the bakery and is baked in the school kitchen every morning.

Are there different food options?

There is a menu designed for each day and it is available on the website, which also suggests some dinner options at home so that the daily menu of the students is as complete as possible.

At the school, there is always a vegetarian option and a grilled meat/ fish option. The salad buffet is large. Cereals such as rice and pasta are served with separate sauces and can be substituted for vegetables. The salad buffet also offers different options.

What type of oil is used to cook?

At the school we always use virgin olive oil for the preparation of grilled dishes, oven or stews. For the fryers we used high oleic sunflower, which has a composition of fats very similar to the fat of olive oil. Its composition of fatty acids is mostly monounsaturated.

Are all vegetables and fruits organic and produced/grown locally?

All the vegetables and fruits supplied to the school come from SANED’s purchasing center, which is dedicated to choosing the best farmers and lands of the Maresme and Catalonia for each product, and collecting daily the products that are served directly from the orchard to Benjamin Franklin.

All the farmers and farms linked to SANED have the following characteristics:

  • Cultivation that respects the environment
  • Natural fertilizers
  • Pollination with bees
  • Sustainable operations
  • Natural pesticides
Where does the meat served at school come from?

It comes from Viñals Gourmet, a family business located in Argentona. This company supplies the veal, pork and lamb that we use in the preparation of our gourmet menus.

The cattle is from their own and associated farms, located in the best cattle regions of Catalonia and Aragon. The breeding takes place in farms and “masías” in the traditional way of Catalonia, putting attention to their natural diet.

In the year 2000, Viñals obtained the certification from the Ministry of Health and Consumption and from the Department of Agriculture, Raising and Fishing of the Generalitat of Catalonia authorizing the CARNROSADA quality mark, which ensures the QUALITY and PURITY of the meats served at the school.

What about the chicken?

Our poultry supplier is Excorchador d'Aus Moré, located in Argentona (Barcelona, Spain). The chicken has to meet strict requirements: raised free, minimum of 81 days, and a diet composed entirely of vegetables: 80% corn, 15% vegetable protein (including rapeseed and sunflower seeds), and 5% of minerals, trace elements and vitamins, as well as insects and weeds found naturally in the forest.

And the fish?

The fish served at the school is frozen, but we make sure that it is of the highest quality and that it is deep-frozen directly on the boat.

Among frozen fish, nutritionists point out that the best quality is that of deep-frozen fish. When the fish is caught in the open sea it is processed and frozen immediately, at a -40º  C in a matter of a few hours. This procedure reduces natural oxidation and preserves freshness, preventing microbial growth and loss of nutrients.

Are the cereals whole grains (rice, pasta, bread, etc.)?

Cereals such as rice or pasta are refined, as it is usually the type of food that students like the most. We have tried to introduce whole grains with little success.

Although it should be noted that the following products used in our menus are ecological:

  • Dried vegetables (chickpeas, beans, lentils)
  • Rice (white and integral) - DO Delta del Ebro
  • Dry pasta (macaroni, noodles, spaghetti ...)
  • Flour
  • Breadcrumbs
  • Pasta: we like to alternate organic pasta with traditional Italian pasta and whole-wheat pasta
Are additives and preservatives used in food from the BFIS cafeteria? If so, what type?

No additives are used in the dishes prepared in the kitchen. Everything is cooked with olive oil, salt and spices. Nor we use any type of flavor enhancer (meat concentrates, broths etc).

Can more integral products be offered, especially when we talk about cereals like rice, pasta, bread, etc.?

Yes, we can offer more whole foods. The problem with this option is that children do not like them very much. We need to have a balance between a healthy meal and a meal that pleases students. SANED operates in a large number of schools throughout Spain and has a research team that continuously develops dishes that are original, nutritious and that most students like. We always try to find the balance between these three aspects. However, if the majority of the community prefers that the products made with cereals be fully integrated, this possibility can be considered.

Is much food thrown away?

No.  Usually there is not much food left over, but it is very difficult to have zero.

What is done with the food that is left over?

Until now, you could not do much due to sanitary legal reasons. The excess of food was discarded. Due to the restrictions imposed from the Health Department, the cooked food that was left over could not be donated to any organization up to now. However, SANED has signed an agreement with an NGO that has developed a process accepted/certified by the health department  through which all the food left over can be packaged and frozen in the school kitchen until the NGO comes to collect it once a week, and  distributes it to charitable organizations and soup kitchens.

Why is the menu so expensive?

The price of the school menu if paid annually is 8 € per menu, if paid monthly it goes up to 8.8 € and if paid per individual ticket the price is 9.5 €. The price is lower than that of most international schools and that of many schools in Barcelona.

The cost of the menu finances, not only the cost of our lunch service provider, but also all the costs of lunch service management, kitchen and cafeteria maintenance, utilities, etc. 

Another aspect to take into account is that BFIS is a foundation, it does not belong to any fund or private entity, so all the surplus that is generated from the services offered is invested again into the school (in the academic program, professional development, facilities, etc.).

 LUNCH FROM HOME

At BFIS our students can either enjoy our hot lunch program, provided by Saned, or they can bring a packed lunch from home each day. Microwaves to heat up the food are only available for Middle School and High School students. Early Childhood and Elementary students may want to bring their food in a therm container.

ALLERGIES OR INTOLERANCES

We adapt our menus to health requirements, allergies or intolerances to any ingredient or food, special dietary requirements, or specific food needs. If your child has any allergies or requires a special diet, please inform our Health Center before the student starts school.