USDA School Nutrition Standards: Good for Kids; Good for Health
Statement from Gabrielle Serra, Senior Associate,public Health Policy & Advocacy
“Public Health Institute applauds the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s release of national school nutrition standards for snacks sold through vending machines, a la carte lines, and school stores. With childhood obesity rates at epidemic proportions, our children need to have healthy foods available to them during the school day. These standards help make that possible.
“Minimum nutrition standards for snacks and beverages sold in schools are a critical component of a comprehensive effort put in place by the Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act of 2010 to promote healthier options at school.
“In California, competitive food standards have been in place since 2007 and have played a significant role in supporting high school students to consume fewer calories and less fat while at school, and to achieve their best in and out of the classroom. Schools have also shown that they can make these changes to promote children’s health without losing important revenue from food and beverage sales.
“PHI, through its programs and projects, has worked for decades to support schools and advocates as they strengthen school nutrition and help kids eat healthier foods. We look forward to working with the USDA and the school nutrition community to ensure successful implementation of the ‘Smart Snacks Schools’ nutrition standards.”