Back in November, I told you about the political battle that was ensuing over school lunches in our country. More specifically, the Obama Administration was calling for healthier meals made with less fat and sodium as well as more fruits and vegetables, while the spending bill passed by Congress recognized tomato paste as a vegetable and called for more research on long-term sodium reduction.
Well, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and First Lady, Michelle Obama, recently announced their success at raising the nutritional standards of school lunches for the first time in 15 years, but they were also forced by the food industry to make some concessions. For example, they were unable to limit french fries on the cafeteria line, and pizza can still be counted as a vegetable.
By and large, the public health community is pleased with the outcome of this battle over healthier school lunches but will undoubtedly continue fighting to make the foods served to our nation’s children healthier still.
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-Willona Stallings, Program Coordinator, Partners in Health and Wholeness