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Hot lunch programs become new norm

Kids eating lunch

In 1935, a St. Louis County home demonstration agent predicted that schools would serve hot lunches just as they hired teachers and bought books. As early as 1911, Extension had set up a hot lunch program in the rural schools, complete with bulletins and recipes.

By 1940, hot lunch programs had been established in more than 200 Minnesota schools. In the 1940s and '50s, Extension nutritionists taught school lunch staff around the state how to transform surplus commodities into healthful meals.