Other Resource

What's Cooking in Colorado's Largest School District? Chicken Raised Without Antibiotics

Jeffco Public Schools is the largest school district in Colorado with nearly 86,000 students and about 12,000 employees. On Sept. 18, 2013—Colorado Proud Day—the school system began serving chicken raised without antibiotics to its students, along with other fresh, locally produced food. Executive Director of Food and Nutrition Services Linda Stoll answered some questions about the importance of Jeffco’s new menu item.  


What is the Colorado Proud lunch menu?

Colorado Proud Day, sponsored by the Colorado Departments of Education and Agriculture, is celebrated annually in school districts across the state. It's an opportunity for our students and school communities to enjoy and learn about the agricultural bounty of our region.

Jeffco Public Schools celebrates Colorado Proud every year. This year, the menu features locally grown and processed BBQ chicken drumsticks, carrot-cabbage coleslaw, Rocky Ford cantaloupe, and sweet potato rolls.

Why did Jeffco Public Schools include chicken drumsticks from a farm that does not use antibiotics?

Purchasing chicken from a local producer that is raising sustainably produced poultry is good for Jeffco students, good for the Colorado economy, and good for the environment. 

Jeffco Food Services takes its role as guardian of student health seriously, which is why we want to support producers that are taking steps to protect our antibiotic supply and public health.

After Colorado Proud Day, we are excited that we'll be able to continue support this new industry in Colorado by serving chicken raised without antibiotics in all elementary schools once each month.

Does the new chicken significantly affect the school system’s budget?

The new chicken actually fits within the parameters established for "Center of the Plate" items on our menu.

What advice would you give other school systems interested in serving meat raised without antibiotics?

Find someone knowledgeable in your area’s farm community and work with them.  When you find your producer, educate them on the economics of the school lunch program and work with them to come up with an agreement that is win-win for both of you.

Progressive, sustainable producers can "do well by doing good" in schools. Their participation in school meals programs can generate well-deserved goodwill within the community and promote brand awareness in retail settings.

What is your favorite item on the new menu?

It’s hard to choose. We're especially excited about the BBQ drumsticks because they're new this year.  The coleslaw is sure to be a hit with the kids.

Colorado is known across the country for our sweet Rocky Ford cantaloupes and the sweet potato roll is a great tasting whole grain product, baked next door in Denver!  

Related Resources

Top Food Companies Moving Away From Overuse of Antibiotics on Industrial Farms

Consumers across the United States are demanding meat and poultry raised without antibiotics—and large producers, restaurants, and other institutions are listening. Following is a list of some leading companies offering responsibly produced food.


FDA Reports that 25 of 26 Antibiotic Makers Will Comply with New Policies

On March 26, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced that 25 out of 26 drug companies that sell antibiotics for growth promotion “confirmed in writing their intent to engage with FDA as defined in Guidance #213.” FDA introduced this policy in final form Dec. 11, 2013, to curb antibiotic overuse and increase veterinary oversight on industrial farms. More

200,000+ Americans to FDA: Require Real Veterinary Oversight of Antibiotics on Industrial Farms

Three months ago, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration took an important step to protect people from superbugs. For the first time, it issued a set of proposed policies that would require food producers and feed mills to obtain a veterinarian’s order before adding antibiotics to animal feed or water. More

New FDA Policies on Antibiotics Use in Food Animal Production

Surveys of the animal production industry by the U.S. Department of Agriculture demonstrate that many farms and ranches administer antibiotics to healthy animals at low doses to offset overcrowding and poor sanitation and to accelerate livestock growth—practices that the medical and public health communities document as a significant factor in human antibiotic resistance. In 2013, FDA took steps to address these concerns.



MRSA, Football, and Industrial Farms

MRSA, or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, is a type of bacteria that can infect a person’s skin, bones, lungs, heart, brain, and blood. Unlike common staph, MRSA does not respond to traditional antibiotics such as penicillin, making it more difficult and costlier to treat, and more lethal.

To Stifle Superbugs, Veterinarians are Vital

To prepare for the big game this Sunday, some of America’s top athletes will run drills and watch film to anticipate the other team’s strategy—but even the best players cannot predict what might be their fiercest opposition.

Superbug Showdown

Like rivals on the gridiron, superbugs and antibiotic drugs are battling for supremacy. Check out the players on Team Antibiotic and Team Superbug. More

Pew Report Highlights Hidden Costs of Industrialized Poultry Production

Industrialized poultry production in the United States delivers considerable efficiencies, but the same system carries significant, hidden costs for the environment, for many communities where chickens are raised for industrial production, and sometimes for the chicken growers themselves, according to a report released today by The Pew Charitable Trusts.

FDA Acts to Fight Superbugs

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today issued a set of policies to curb the overuse of antibiotics on industrial farms. Using these drugs in animals and people contributes to the spread of resistant bacteria that can infect and hospitalize people. About 70 percent of medically important antibiotics sold in this country are for food animals, and most are used in feed without supervision of a veterinarian. More

New York State PTA Votes to Protect Antibiotics and Children's Health

The New York State Parent Teacher Association made history at its 117th Annual Convention by becoming the first state PTA to take a stand against antibiotic overuse in livestock. On November 16, delegates passed a resolution calling on Congress and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to protect human health from antibiotic overuse on industrial meat and poultry farms. More

3 Tips for Setting a Sustainable Table This Thanksgiving

This Thanksgiving, as Americans think of family and feasting, consumers can use the opportunity to encourage a food production system that promotes and protects our health.

Hospitals Make the Switch to Meat Raised Without Antibiotics

Chris Linaman, executive chef at Overlake Medical Center in Bellevue, WA, is dedicated to creating a more sustainable food system by supporting growers and producers who raise food without the routine use of antibiotics that endanger the public’s health. Working in partnership with Health Care Without Harm and Overlake’s administration, Chris has created a comprehensive sustainable food purchasing policy for Overlake Hospital that has resulted in many impressive achievements in just a short time.


Quiz: Get Smart About Antibiotics on the Farm

November 18-24 is Get Smart About Antibiotics Week, an annual campaign by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that promotes the importance of appropriate antibiotic use. The human health and industrial farming campaign of The Pew Charitable Trust has created an interactive quiz to highlight the overuse of antibiotics in animal food production and test your knowledge of the issue. More

Former FDA Heads Urge White House to Fight Superbugs, Curb Antibiotic Overuse

Two former FDA commissioners – David Kessler (1990-1997) and Donald Kennedy (1977-1979) – wrote to OMB Director Sylvia Matthews Burwell urging her to take action on antibiotics in agricultural feed.


SuperChefs Against Superbugs

SuperChefs Against Superbugs, an initiative of the Pew Campaign on Human Health and Industrial Farming, is a movement of chefs nationwide who have expressed their support of ending the misuse and overuse of antibiotics in food animal production. As a result, the SuperChefs are urging the Food and Drug Administration to strengthen its antibiotic policies.