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Local students love newest cafeteria menu item: California sushi rolls

Food is selling out at Tampa's Mabry Elementary
boys with California rolls
Posted at 4:11 AM, Mar 04, 2020

TAMPA, Fla. — “We love sushi!”

With tiny hands, the fifth-graders at Tampa’s Mabry Elementary School reach for trays of California rolls in the lunch line.

A few months ago, this school was one of a few in the Tampa Bay area to begin testing sushi as a lunch option for grade-schoolers.

It’s been a smash hit ever since.

“The first day we go it, we sold about 24 trays in about 15 minutes,” says Mabry Elementary cafeteria worker Tracy Riopelle.

The sushi goes for $5 a tray.

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The California rolls arrive frozen via a Seattle-based seafood company called Trident. The sushi is then thawed at the schools and put on the lunch line — where it goes fast.

Grade-school cafeterias now offer kids a wider selection than ever before. There are vegetarian, gluten-free and healthy options. And now, sushi.

But the more things change, the more they stay the same.

The Mabry Elementary kitchen recently introduced curious students to a “classic" sandwich: Sloppy Joes.