Tuesday, February 5, 2013

USDA Aims for Healthier Snacks and Drinks in Schools

Proposed Standards are First Update in More Than 30 Years
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) proposed updated nutrition standards for school snack foods and beverages. The first update since 1979, the proposed standards aim to help schools provide healthier fare in vending machines, cafeteria à la carte lines, and other places where foods and beverages are offered outside of the school meals program.

Currently, many of the snack foods and beverages sold in schools are high in calories, fat, and sugar and offer few nutrients. Notably, the proposed standards call for schools to offer more snacks with whole grains, low-fat dairy, fruits, or vegetables as their main ingredient. If implemented, the proposed standards would improve the nutritional quality of the snacks and beverages available to tens of millions of students before, during, and after the school day. USDA will seek public comment on the proposal for 60 days.

The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 directed USDA to update the standards for all foods and beverages sold in schools throughout the school campus during the school day. USDA finalized regulations for school meals in January 2012.

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

1 comment:

  1. This is great news. Reading the proposed standards, they seem to reasonable and right - more of the foods we should eat, less of the salty, fatty foods and caffeinated drinks, while still allowing for important traditions in our school lives. I always loved the school bake sales and the birthday cupcakes. But of course, they could be carrot cake!