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Chicken eggrolls and vegetable chili were the winners when a group of Apollo Middle School students sampled about 30 items from food brokers and then rated them on a scale from awesome to gross.

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The food items selected will be pilot tested over the next few months in Broward County public schools. If the students like them, they may become a part of the districts’ menu in its schools. “We want to get an idea of what our children like in their food,”said Darlene Moppert, program manager for nutrition services for Broward County Public Schools.

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“The children know what they like, and they have options. They have eaten in restaurants and they know about how food is served.”

The Broward County Public School system serves breakfast, lunch and dinner to a large school-age population.

At the tasting, the students sampled items including vegetarian chili, chicken and cheese taquitos, veggie fried rice, chicken soft tacos, fiesta cheese omelets, sourdough grilled cheese with turkey bacon, roasted garlic quinoa burgers, yuca fries, vegetable pot stickers and more.

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”This was a lot of fun and it is not something you get to do every day,” said student Dakota Chesser,  who favored the chicken eggroll.  Another student, Natalie Irwin,  said she liked trying all the food and seconded the vote for the chicken eggroll. A third student, Samuel Vaknin, gave his endorsement to the vegetable chili.

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The student food show took place at Pompano Beach High School. Students from Sandpiper Elementary School also took part in the taste testing. All the students agreed that trying the various food items was a fun way to spend a day at school.


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David Volz has been a reporter for Hollywood Gazette since 2011 and has worked for numerous community news publications throughout South Florida over the past two decades including the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, Miami Herald and South Florida Business Journal. He is a Professor in the Business department at Broward College and the editor of the Coral Springs Connection, an online community news website. He covers city government, schools, sports events, cultural activities, faith groups and workplaces.


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