Monday, July 9, 2012

New Requirements for National School Lunch Program

The Healthy, Hunger-Free Act of 2010 provided the most comprehensive changes to the school nutrition program in over a decade.  The Act is aimed at fighting childhood obesity and childhood hunger, two problems that continue to face our school children.

As part of the Act, significant changes were made to the federal requirements for school meals.  These changes include:
  • A daily serving of fruit
  • A daily serving of vegetables
  • An increased quantity of combined fruits and vegetables
  • Distinction between fruit and vegetables, and requirements for serving both
  • Whole-grain rich grains
  • Fat-free or low-fat milk
  • Calorie minimum and maximum levels
  • Sodium reductions
  • Trans fat limits
  • Saturated fat limits
  • 3-year administrative review cycle
The new lunch requirements became effective July 1, 2012, the beginning of school year 2012-2013.  Changes to the breakfast program will be phased in starting July 1, 2013.

Although these changes reflect important change to federal law, California also has strict requirements for the sale of food and beverages to school children set forth in the California Education Code.

For more information on these changes, please visit the US Department of Agriculture's website on Nutrition Standards for School Meals.

Meghan Covert Russell

No comments:

Post a Comment