It’s a “Shrimpy” Season for Wild Maine Shrimp

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Good news for Sweet Maine Shrimp lovers; the season officially opened two days ago.  Sweet Maine Shrimp, also called Northern Shrimp, are small, pink, and wild caught. These beauties show up off the coast of Maine during the wintertime.

The bad news is that is that this year’s season is the shortest ever, with the catch limit cut by seventy-five percent from last year. The cut is due to a decline in population caused by warmer waters.

If you are lucky enough to find them fresh…grab-em!

SideBar -if your local fishmonger doesn’t have them fresh AllFreshSeafood.com affiliated with Pescatore Seafood Co in New York City. They ship fresh fish daily all over the United States.

Big City Schools Form an Alliance to Serve Healthful Meals

Preparing meals in L.A. Unified

Fatty corn dogs and sugary coffee cake may become extinct in thousands of school cafeterias nationwide under a landmark new alliance among Los Angeles Unified and five other major urban school districts to leverage their vast purchasing power for healthier fare and lower prices.

School districts in L.A., New York, Chicago, Dallas, Miami and Orlando, Fla., plan to announce Thursday efforts to use their collective clout — 2.5 million daily meals served and $530 million annually spent — to make wholesome food a national standard. The districts are also aiming for more eco-friendly practices; replacing polystyrene and plastic with biodegradable trays and flatware, for instance.

As such diet-related maladies as diabetes and obesity increase among children, the quest to reduce fat, sugar and sodium in school meals has gained new urgency among districts. L.A. Unified has overhauled its menu with whole grains and fresh produce; New York offers a salad bar at every school; and Chicago has swapped cupcakes for fruit at school celebrations.

Now, by joining forces, the alliance members hope to move the market and eventually enlist other school districts in the crusade. Already, San Diego, Oakland and Houston have all expressed interest.

The new Urban School Food Alliance first met last summer in Denver, and has since conferred regularly by teleconference to share and review menu items that use whole grain products, low-fat dairy, fresh produce and lean protein.

To demonstrate their collective mission, alliance members plan to serve the same lunch at all six school districts in March. The menu: savory roasted chicken, brown rice with seasoned black or red beans, steamed broccoli, fresh seasonal fruit and milk.

Contribution: Teresa Watanabe, LAT