(社説)給食と牛乳 望ましい食事とは何か

June 02, 2014
EDITORIAL: Removal of milk from school lunches sparks debate over dietary habits
(社説)給食と牛乳 望ましい食事とは何か

Milk doesn’t go well with Japanese cuisine, called “washoku,” does it? This simple question has provoked a heated controversy over school lunch menus.
 和食に牛乳は合わないのでは――そんな素朴な問いかけが、思わぬ反響を呼んでいる。

Sanjo, a city in Niigata Prefecture known as a rice production area, has decided to stop serving milk in its school lunches for four months from December this year on a trial basis. The decision represents a departure from a national tradition. School meals in this country almost always are served with milk.
 米どころで知られる新潟県の三条市が、学校給食につきものだった牛乳を試験的に停止すると決めた。

Sanjo’s decision was a response to complaints by parents that milk doesn’t fit in well with the washoku meals featuring mainly locally produced rice and vegetables that had begun to be offered at schools in the city.
地元の米や野菜を使った和食中心の給食を提供し始めたところ、保護者らから「牛乳と合わない」の声が出たことがきっかけだった。

The menu for one day in May, for example, consisted of Japanese royal ferns and bamboo shoots boiled slowly in soy broth, a trout that has been sprinkled with salt and broiled, white rice steamed with red adzuki beans, plus green peas and clear soup with steamed egg custard.
 例えば、5月のある日の献立はこんなふうだ。ぜんまいと筍(たけのこ)の煮しめ、マスの塩焼き、豆入り赤飯、卵豆腐入りすまし汁。

Even such traditional Japanese-style meals are always served with milk at school.
こんな昔ながらの和食にも、必ず牛乳がつく。

This is a tradition that started soon after the end of World War II when powdered skim milk began to be served at schools nationwide. Since then, milk has been an essential part of school lunches in this country.
学校給食では、戦後始まった脱脂粉乳の提供以来、当たり前の風景だ。

Sanjo’s move, which has been seen as a rebel against convention, has brought on spirited debates over the pros and cons in discussion forums on the Internet and in TV talk shows.
 それだけに、常識を覆す試みとしてネットやテレビなどで賛否両論がうずまいた。

Proponents say Japanese-style meals should be served with miso soup and green tea. But critics argue that this is a matter of personal preference.
 「やはり和食にはみそ汁、お茶」と賛同する声の一方で、個人の好みの問題だと反発の声が上がる。

Some people voice nutritional concerns that the elimination of milk from school lunch menus could result in calcium deficiency among children in their growth periods. But others contend that milk doesn’t suit the physical makeup of Japanese.
栄養面でも「成長期の子がカルシウム不足になる」と懸念する人がいれば、「そもそも牛乳は日本人の体質に合わない」と主張する人もいる。

Lurking behind this milk controversy, it seems, are the anxiety and doubts that Japanese people are feeling about their dietary habits despite the abundance of food in this country.
 背景には、豊富な食事情の裏で、人々が抱える不安や迷いがひそんでいるのではないか。

The history of school lunches in Japan dates to the Meiji Era (1868-1912). Originally, they were intended for students from poor families who were unable to bring their own lunches to school.
 日本初の学校給食は、弁当を持参できない貧しい生徒のため、明治時代に始まった。

A typical menu was made up of rice balls, grilled fish and pickles. Such frugal meals were common among Japanese households in those days.
おにぎりに焼き魚、漬物。家庭でもこんな素朴な献立が当たり前だった。

As the Japanese economy started growing rapidly after the war, triggering the massive migration of the rural population to urban areas, the nation’s culinary tradition began to fade amid a plethora of foodstuffs of all kinds, from high-end items to junk food. Since that era, a growing number of Japanese have become confused by a flood of information for fine food lovers and health conscious consumers.
それが高度成長期に入り人々が都会に集中し始めると、高級品からジャンクフードまであらゆる食べ物があふれる一方で、食の伝統は細り、グルメ情報や健康情報に振り回されて右往左往する人が増えはじめた。

The situation appears to have increased public expectations for school lunches, which have a good nutritional balance.
 だからこそ、栄養バランスが取れた学校給食に対する期待が高いのだろう。

Let us stop to think what desirable meals mean in the first place.
 立ち止まって考えたい。望ましい食事とはいったい何か。

The news that washoku was added to UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage list in December 2013 is still fresh in our memory.
 ユネスコの無形文化遺産に「和食」が登録されたことは記憶に新しい。

That means Japanese culinary culture, which makes the most of fresh food in season grown in a favorable natural environment, has been internationally recognized as healthy and delicious.
豊かな風土で育まれた季節の素材を生かした食文化が、ヘルシーでおいしいと世界的な評価を受けた。

The key question is not whether milk goes well with Japanese food. Milk is an efficient source of calcium that has contributed significantly to the physical development of Japanese children as it has been served with school lunches.
 肝心なのは牛乳の是非論ではなかろう。牛乳は効率の良いカルシウム源で、給食を通じて子の成長に寄与してきた。

But food is not a supplement. Another major cause of the calcium deficiency among Japanese is the decline of the traditional diet, which contains fish or sesame.
だが食品はサプリメントではない。日本人のカルシウム不足は、魚やゴマなどを取る伝統的な食生活が失われたことも大きい。

To make up for the elimination of milk from school lunches, Sanjo is tweaking other elements of the menu, such as the amount of rice and the contents of dishes accompanying the rice, to ensure the meals contain all the necessary nutrients.
 牛乳をなくした分、米の量やおかずの内容を工夫して、米どころらしい献立で必要な栄養を満たす。

We are willing to see how the city’s attempt to develop a well-balanced menu that reflects its reputation as a major rice production area will pan out.
そんな三条市の試みに、素直に注目したい。

That’s because truly luxurious meals may be something we are quite familiar with.
本当にぜいたくな食事とは、実は私たちの身近なところにあるのかもしれないのだから。

--The Asahi Shimbun, June 1
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2014-06-04 10:25 | 英字新聞

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