Chartwells K12’s New Smoothie Station Popping Up in More than 140 Schools Across the Nation
Partnership with National Dairy Council, General Mills, and Hubert Brings New Favorite Smoothies for Students to Fill Up on the Move
Between classes, sports, and seeing friends, students are always on the go and craving meals that can keep up with their busy school schedule. This fall, kids have a new way to fuel their day as Chartwells K12 introduces their Smoothie Station concept, featuring healthy wholesome drinkable breakfast, lunch, and snack options packed with fruits and dairy in more than a dozen flavor combinations. The Smoothie Station will launch in more than 140 schools beginning this month, including Flagstaff Unified School District (Ariz.), School Town of Munster (Ind.) and Poplar Bluff School District (Mo.).
“Smoothies were the leading beverage added to restaurant menus last year*, and we’re tapping into that interest and excitement by bringing them straight to the school cafeteria,” said Belinda Oakley, CEO, Chartwells K12. “With our new Smoothie Station concept, we took insights heard directly from students and created a way to offer a delicious, on-the-go meal to help kids power through their day.”
Keeping on-trend with smoothie restaurants across the country, Chartwells’ new Smoothie Station will offer a variety of flavor combinations for traditional smoothies as well as new smoothie bowls students can customize with different fruit and grain toppings. Each smoothie contains at least one serving of fruit and dairy, providing students with a healthy beverage as part of their breakfast or lunch options.
“Smoothies offer the unique benefit of providing multiple meal components that students can drink in the cafeteria or easily take with them,” said Lindsey Palmer, MBA, MS, RDN, VP, Nutrition and Industry Relations. “They also provide a great opportunity for kids to consume more yogurt, milk, and fruits, including new combinations they may not have tried before.”
Developed by Chartwells chefs and dietitians in partnership with General Mills, recipes range from the popular Strawberry Banana Smoothie to more unique, adventurous combinations like those in the creamy Avocado Kale Mango or Mango Chili Lime smoothies, with additional options including Mixed Berry, Strawberry Oat, and more.
“In developing the smoothie concept, it was important for us to offer students familiar, well-loved smoothie recipes along with flavor profiles that may be new to them,” said Chef Peter Gilhooly, Vice President – Culinary, Chartwells K12. “Smoothie Station is our latest cafeteria concept where we’re making sure kids have a variety of choices available and a chance to discover something new.”
Chartwells K12 is partnering with National Dairy Council, General Mills, and Hubert to launch the Smoothie Station concept. Schools participating in the pilot program will receive a Smoothie Station kit provided by National Dairy Council through Hubert, a food service equipment manufacturer, that includes a Waring commercial immersion blender, insulated cooler bags to hold prepared smoothies, a transport cart, and more.
Earlier this fall Chartwells introduced their new Global Eats program, taking students on a food exploration to celebrate the cultural heritages of China, India, Italy, and Mexico – without ever leaving the cafeteria. Smoothie Station and Global Eats are the latest innovative programs to join Discovery Kitchen, Student Choice, and Mood Boost in making cafeterias the happiest place in schools.