A mother from Manitoba, Canada was fined $10 for sending her children to school with unbalanced lunches.
Kristen Bartkiw dropped her children, 3-year-old Natalie and 5-year-old Logan, off to daycare with lunches of leftover roast beef, potatoes, carrots, milk and oranges.
The Daily Mail reports that the daycare providers thought the lunch did not fit the nutritional bill because Bartkiw was charged for the Ritz crackers that the lunches had to be packed with.
According to Metro News, daycare providers are required by Manitoba laws to offer children a nutritious meal as approved by the Canadian Food Guide, including one milk, one meat, one grain and two fruits.
The daycare gave each of the children Ritz crackers to balance the lunches and make up for the missing grain mandatory under school policy.
“They have certain legislation that they have in place where you have to follow these food groups, but it doesn’t matter how processed the foods are or if they’re junk food… so Ritz crackers count as a grain,” Bartkiw, 33, who lives in Rossburn, Man., told Metro News. “I phoned the daycare worker and said ‘you know, potatoes, surely I can get away with this,’ and they didn’t actually end up charging me the $10.
She actually sat on the board of the daycare when she was fined last December.
“You could send microwave Kraft Dinner everyday and that would count as a grain under the guide,” Bartkiw said. “I would encourage parents to not just blindly follow the Canada Food Guide, but really think about eating more real food and not packaged food.”
Bartkiw says Manitoba has changed to a hot lunch program at daycares in order to help parents who send “unbalanced” lunches with their children, according to Weighty Matters blog, which reported her story first.