''Is pizza a vegetable? Lessons from the fight to change the way America's school kids eat lunch''
"Provo's lunch ladies are riding the wave of a nationwide trend. New regulations for school lunches, which are funded by the federal government, were proposed by the United States Department of Agriculture last month and will be officially announced in January. The new rules are based on recommendations from the National Academies' Institute of Medicine, and may take effect as early as July.
But not only are lunches themselves changing; who eats them is also in flux. A lot more students — in Provo, in Utah, and all over the country — are going to be affected by the new regulations than ever before. In an age of recession, when parents are losing jobs and homes, millions more children qualify for the free and reduced-price lunches the government provides when the families cannot.
The question remains, how will child nutrition programs grapple with these two transformations in tandem? How will the lunch ladies of 2012 feed more kids, and how will they feed them better?"
March is National Nutrition Month, a time to focus new energy on giving kids healthy food options throughout the school day. Students consume up to half of their daily calories in school, so access to wholesome meals and snacks is important to their overall health. In fact, research shows that students living in states with strong nutrition laws gain less weight than those in states without such policies.More info
Jessica Donze Black, director for the Pew Charitable Trusts’ Kids’ Safe and Healthful Foods Project, calls the modification change a “pragmatic and scientifically sound decision,” and San Francisco-based school food reformer Dana Woldow agrees: “[The calorie caps] will automatically limit the amount of potentially fatty protein and grains going into the meals. I think the days of seeing giant cheeseburgers the size of your head in school cafeterias may be over.”More info
It was food delivery day at Glen Landing Middle School in Blackwood, New Jersey, and the 42-year-old walk-in freezer went kaput. Again.More info
This is the second in a series of reports that summarizes how schools are putting in place updated U.S. Department of Agriculture, or USDA, meal standards and the challenges they must overcome to reach full implementation.More info
infrastructure. More info
Schools would be better able to serve healthy, appealing meals if investments were made in new kitchen equipment and infrastructure.More info
Only 1 in 10 school districts nationwide (12 percent) has all the kitchen equipment needed to serve healthy foods, according to a new report issued by the Kids’ Safe and Healthful Foods Project. The report makes recommendations for how schools, policymakers, industry, and philanthropic partners can work together to make these investments and provide healthy, appealing foods more efficiently. It is the first national assessment of districts’ kitchen equipment and infrastructure needs.More info