DeSoto schools try new ovens to "trim the fat"

Lunchtime changes could be coming to some Mid-South schools.

Kids are known to be picky eaters. So, when Oak Grove Elementary in DeSoto County decided to get rid of deep fryers and replace them with a new kind of oven, many wondered if kids would notice the difference.

It's called the Convo-Therm oven and it's being used in three schools in Mississippi including at Oak Grove.

The goal is to cut down the fat kids consume during school lunches. After all, Mississippi leads the nation in childhood obesity.

These ovens take the moisture out of the food, yet keep it juicy on the inside by steaming it.

The end result is that the food is crispier, that it tastes like it's been deep fried with half the fat.

It also cooks as fast as a deep fryer.

They've been using the oven at this school the past month, but didn't tell the students until now.

"I think the food is very good, taste good," said 4th grader Ali Chatham.

"It mainly tastes the same, the french fries the food and chicken and all that stuff," said Leah Green.

"Our kids they know the difference in french fries and fried foods and our kids all love it," said Schools Superintendent Milton Kuykendall.

These ovens are expensive. They cost around $40,000. But, school officials in DeSoto County say it's the big picture they're looking at.

They hope to put these ovens in all 33 schools in the county.

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