Smart Snacks in School: Comments Due Today!

October 28, 2013

Comment today on USDA standards!

Last June USDA published an interim rule setting nutrition guidelines for “competitive foods,” or foods and beverages served in schools outside the National School Lunch Program. This was a huge moment for school food advocates. For the first time, there are nutrition standards for all foods in schools including a la carte, vending and foods sold in school stores.

Well, this moment is shifting from interim to final as today the USDA is closing its public comment period on these rules. So, if you want to let the USDA know that they are going in the right direction, didn’t go far enough or just want to say thanks, today is the day to do so.

We made submitted comments to the USDA. In summary, our comments make the following points:

  • HSC remains strongly supportive of the USDA’s science-based nutrition standards
  • Limited exemptions on a la carte items strike a delicate balance between operational flexibility and supporting nutrition goals and should not be further weakened
  • Phasing in the nutrition requirements for competitive foods through naturally occurring nutrients rather than fortification is appropriate given current marketplace concerns and longer-term goals to support the Daily Guidelines for Americans and should be maintained
  • The USDA should establish additional guidelines and best practices to support states in implementing strategies to encourage the use of healthy foods and/or non-food fundraiser options

Do you want to comment? Submit here. 

What are your thoughts? Tweet @healthyschools to continue the conversation.