How to eat organic in collectivity: Meeting with a Waldorf school in Germany

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For this paper I suggest you go to Dresden in East Germany, to a Waldorf School, also named the Steiner School, from the name of the founder of this kind of education, Rudolph Steiner.

The free Waldorf School was founded in Dresden in 1929. It was closed in 1941 during World War II and some of their founders died because of their opinions. It opened again in 1945, but again closed when the German Democratic Republic was founded. The school is again open since 1990.

There are 13 levels in the curriculum. Students, from 6 to 18 years old, study German, history, mathematics, computers, physics, chemistry, biology, geography, English, Russian, art, music, harmony, eurythmy, gardening, sport… Some free French workshops are also given in the afternoon and there are different demonstrations. In February 2007 it will be a conference about the Waldorf curriculum and a performance from Berthold Brecht‘s « Four Penny Opera« .

     

copyright : Freie Waldorfschule Dresden

On a culinary level, meals were not always organic. Before, the school received meals from a non-organic supplier. But one day, by changing the supplier, it was possible to eat organic. The supplier gave one organic menu and two non-organic menus to students, teachers, other school workers and guests. Meals were distributed already cooked, school personnel had just to give them to everybody.
Eating organic was a new idea that came about because some people were unhappy with the quality of the previous food. They thought about the possibility of eating something better and healthier. Everybody said what they wanted. Parents and teachers especially were wishing for organic food. And finally, teachers, parents and students decided to embark on a new way of eating: organic.

It’s also possible because the cooking team is very competent. It is a private company, the Green Wonder which works in the new and modern kitchen of the school. It prepares 300 lunches each day for the school and distributes also some other foods to the Kindergarten.

It’s true that organic meals are more expensive than non-organic. But the difference in cost is also dependant on the quantity. So the more meals you cook, the less expensive it is. What the Green Wonder offers is varied, fresh food, so everybody enjoys the new organic meals. At the beginning, the company asked for everyone’s reactions and to hoped to optimise its offerings.

We know that the school is a particular case, that is not the same in every school. It’s not possible to cook fresh food everywhere. The products come usually from the nearest organic producers. The quality of the food is also particular; it’s not the same in most schools.

For example, here is the menu for the week of January 22nd to 26th:

Monday
Whole wheat spaghetti with broccoli and sour cream
Fruits

Tuesday
Fish fricasseed with rice
Yogurt with forest berries

Wednesday
Small soup with vegetables
Sugared apple gratin and danish sauce with vanilla

Thursday
Potato, vegetable
Salted doughnut (from potato) with yogurt and herbs

Friday
Buckwheat, vegetables, noodle gratin with cheese and curry sauce

Salad, pizza and small bread are also served with these meals.

If you want to know more about this school, visit it website and correspond with the students who would be very happy to respond.

I wrote this paper whith the kind help of Mrs Turandocht Debarge, consulting teacher from the school.