France: Ketchup, Home-Packed Lunches Not Allowed in School Cafeterias

Kim Willsher of the Los Angeles Times reports:

“In an effort to promote healthful eating and, it has been suggested, to protect traditional Gallic cuisine, the French government has banned school and college cafeterias nationwide from offering the American tomato-based condiment with any food but — of all things — French fries.

As a result, students can no longer use ketchup on such traditional dishes as veal stew, no matter how gristly, and boeuf bourguignon, regardless of its fat content.

Moreover, French fries can be offered only once a week, usually with steak hache, or burger. Not clear is whether the food police will send students to detention if they dip their burgers into the ketchup that accompanies their fries.

“French schoolchildren are not allowed to bring home-prepared lunches to school and must either eat in the cafeteria or go home for lunch.”

Tell us what you think. Has the French government gone too far regulating what kids are eating in school? As a parent, how would you react if you weren’t able to send a home-packed lunch to school with your child? Share your answer with us on Facebook.