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Sara Lee North American Fresh Bakery, maker of Sara Lee Soft & Smooth bread and bun line, recently brought together 13 mom bloggers for the first-ever Sara Lee® Soft & Smooth™ Back-to-School Nutrition Summit at the Kitchens of Sara Lee in Downers Grove, Ill. With the goal of making back-to-school food preparation easier on parents, the bloggers traded insights on family-focused nutrition and experts advised on how to make quick and simple lunches featuring whole grain nutrition.
“Sara Lee went straight to the source to understand the nutrition challenges moms are having when sending their kids back to school, especially when it comes to the ongoing confusion that exists in the bread aisle,” noted Sara Lee North American Fresh Bakery VP Tim Zimmer. “Each mom blogger had great ideas to help us educate America’s moms when it comes to differentiating between traditional wheat and 100 percent whole wheat breads, and moving white bread families to newer versions with whole grain.”
During the July 23 event, moms and experts came up with such helpful food tips as getting kids involved in making lunch, organizing the night before to avoid last-minute morning stress, including fun games and jokes in lunchboxes, and having children help select fruits and vegetables at the grocery store.
“We’ve been investing in educating moms about whole grain nutrition for years, but this is the first time we’ve been able to actually meet with them one-on-one, engage them in dialogue, learn from them and work with them to help us share our message more impactfully,” added Zimmer. “What we learned at this summit will help us be a better, more viable and approachable resource to moms.”
“The amount of whole grains the average person consumes is drastically lower than the recommended daily amount of 48 grams and what is needed for good health,” said registered dietitian Connie Diekman, who provided education on the benefits of whole grain at the summit. “Understanding what makes bread 100 percent whole wheat can be confusing, but by simply learning how to identify whole grain products, moms can easily begin taking the steps to incorporate whole grains into a child’s diet.”
Additional event activities included a lunchtime nutrition challenge to create a complete sandwich-based lunch that had to be tasty, nutritious and enjoyed by kids. The recipes were judged by both a “secret panel” of child judges and a dietitian. “The Sassy Smoothie” mom blogger team snagged the “best overall” designation for its “Inside Out Lunch,” which is featured on the Sara Lee Soft & Smooth Facebook page.
“Mom bloggers are the perfect audience to help pinpoint challenges faced when sending kids back to school,” observed Amy Clark, founder of MomAdvice.com. “Being able to join with Sara Lee to share insights, while having access to expert advice, is a great way to help our readers better prepare. If you want something done right, it’s best to go straight to the source, and this summit gives us valuable and practical information that moms really need.”
Among the bloggers who attended the summit were Amanda Acuna of Mommy Mandy, Amy Lupold Bair of Resourceful Mommy, Louise Bishop of Mom Start, Clark, Stacie Connerty of Divine Miss Mommy, Stacy DeBroff of Mom Central, Tanya Gordon of Mommy Goggles, Amber Johnson of Mile High Mommas, Miranda Kuskie of Keeper of the Cheerios, Kathy Peel of Parent Dish, Kristina Saurwein of MOMformation, Melissa Summers of Suburban Bliss and Tara Ziegmont of Feels Like Home.