Students allegedly served 6-year-old meat at Tennessee school cafeteria

Posted at 2:31 PM, May 01, 2015
and last updated 2015-05-01 14:31:00-04

KNOXVILLE, Tenn.  — Students in a Tennessee school district were allegedly served 6-year-old meat at lunch and now parents are fuming over the disgusting cuisine given to their children.

Michael Herrell, a concerned parent and Hawkins County commissioner, said he received a picture on Thursday of a pork roast from a cafeteria cook at Joseph Primary School. The meat was marked with a date of 2009.

“They go to school and that might be the only meal they get all day long and it just…upsets me that these kids are going to school to get that meal,” Herrell told CNN affiliate WATE-TV. “It just didn’t go over well with me that I heard we were feeding these kids the meat that’s dated 2009.”

Herrell said a cook at Cherokee High School told him the meat was bad, but was told by the manager to cover it with gravy to make it taste better. There have been no reports of any students getting sick from the meat and it was not clear if the food was tainted.

Guidelines created by the U.S. Department of Agriculture note that quality and taste for roast pork is between four and 12 months.

Steve Starnes, Hawkins County director of schools, said they plant to follow these guidelines and implement new procedures.

“We also began inventory of on all of our frozen food items to make sure,” Starnes told WATE-TV. “We’re not going to incorporating not only the package date but also the delivery date on our inventory items, make sure we know exactly when those items came in.”

He said he’s unsure how meat that old was still in the school’s freezer.

Hawkins County official Kristen Holloway said Starnes vowed to implement random quarterly inspections of school cafeterias to make sure this incident does not happen again.