Debit Card/Payment Systems + School Lunches

School Lunch Line Photo

WARNING: School Lunch Debit Card Systems = Lower Nutrition + Higher Calories! Using a national survey of 2,314 U.S. public school students, David Just and Brian Wansink from Cornell University, compared lunch purchases in schools with debit-only systems to those with both debit and cash payment options. Debit-only payment systems were associated with students buying more unhealthy à la carte foods. While students in debit and cash schools actually bought more fresh fruit and vegetables.

So after cutting recess for students (so they can have more instructional class time) and implementing debit card/payment systems (so they can get through the lunch line faster buying more unhealthy foods) we wonder why American students keep getting fatter and fatter?

On a sarcastically positive note, at least far fewer kids will get bullied in school during recess for their lunch money.

UPDATE: Brain Wansink resigned or retired on June 30, 2019. Cornell University conducted a year-long review that found Brian Wansink “committed academic misconduct in his research and scholarship, including misreporting of research data, problematic statistical techniques, failure to properly document and preserve research results, and inappropriate authorship.” The JAMA retracted 6 articles that included Dr. Brian Wansink as an author. According to BuzzFeed, “13 of Wansink’s papers have been retracted and more than a dozen others corrected.”

This study, supported by the USDA, was not retracted and the co-author David Just remains on the faculty at Cornell’s Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management where he serves as the Susan Eckert Lynch Professor of Science and Business.

Fran Kick

FRAN KICK works with corporate and education organizations, groups, and associations that want to develop better leaders and smarter followers for faster long-term results. As an author, educational consultant, and professional speaker, he always shares relevant research, real-world insights, and actionable ideas YOU can implement to motivate yourself. So you can Kick It In and Take the Lead at work, in school, at home, and in life!