Have you seen or heard about Opaa's colorful new environmental graphics? We're testing them as part of a pilot program in several cafeterias, and we're proud to say that students played an integral role in finalizing the graphic treatment and choosing the winning themeline—Feed Your Brain. Professional focus groups conducted at several participating schools enabled Opaa! to gain valuable insights as students reacted to readability, relevance, appetite appeal, color palette and more.

"Students who participated in the focus groups can definitely see their input reflected in our new graphics," says Opaa's Sheila Frost, Vice President, Wellness & Nutrition. "These groups were also a priceless opportunity to talk to students face to face about what and why they eat in the cafeteria and to listen to their questions and worthwhile suggestions. We've taken their feedback to heart. A few suggestions have extended beyond graphics into the actual menu planning this year."

Cafeteria-Wide Hanging Banner

Grab & Go Breakfast Cart
Focus group participants also expressed enthusiasm for another idea—a Grab & Go breakfast cart that Opaa! is currently testing in several schools. Exhibiting "Feed Your Brain" graphics, the cart offers cost-conscious, timesaving, nutritious options for students who might otherwise skip breakfast. Offerings include fruit yogurt and granola parfaits, breakfast burritos and more.

Record-Setting Participation
"The homemade waffles topped with fresh fruit are a hit. And breakfast sandwiches are very popular," says Terry Kelmel, Director of Nutrition Services in the Smithville, MO school district. "Last year at Smithville High School, we sold, on average, about 10 breakfasts per day—22 on our best day. Already this year there are days we've sold over 70 breakfasts. And since the Grab & Go meals are reimbursable, they're available to all students. Adults enjoy eating from the breakfast cart, too—we've never seen adults eat breakfast at school."

Positive Response To Graphics
"The new graphics are getting a good response," says Terry. "Even our kitchen employees say it makes their working environment feel more professional. Participation is up. The principal is happy. The kitchen staff is enthusiastic. You can't argue with success." The new graphics and breakfast cart are part of a pilot program designed to increase participation. Opaa! will be tracking the results throughout the school year.

Breakfast Cart