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U.S. Senate considering child nutrition programs

This news story was published on January 20, 2016.
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U.S. Capitol

U.S. Capitol

WASHINGTON, D.C. – In anticipation of legislation this week from the Senate to reauthorize child nutrition programs, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack provides the following statement:

We are pleased the Senate is making bipartisan progress to reauthorize critical child nutrition programs. The Senate’s bill is a win for children, parents, schools and for our country’s future. It maintains our commitment to science-based nutrition standards for school meals and protects the advancements we have made in children’s health since the passage of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act. Rather than diminish the progress made since the changes were implemented in 2012, the Senate’s bill ensures progress will continue improving our children’s diets, and it promises to end partisan battles about the future of our kids.

The bill is consistent with the approach taken at USDA all along, which is to provide reasonable flexibility for schools as they continue transitioning to the updated standards — an approach that is working. A 2014 Harvard study shows that in some schools, under the updated standards, kids are now eating 16 percent more vegetables and 23 percent more fruit at lunch. A 2015 study by the University of Connecticut’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity found that kids ate nearly 20 percent more of their vegetables in the schools they examined after the standards were updated. And a study of schools in Washington State just published in the Journal of the American Medical Association Pediatrics found that the nutritional quality of meals chosen by students has improved since HHFKA was implemented, while program participation did not change. Multiple surveys have documented how the majority of parents and students like the new meals, and—most important—new evidence suggests after decades of a growing obesity epidemic that harmed the health and future of our children and cost our country billions, we are starting to see progress in preventing this disease. The bill sustains and supports this progress.

We applaud the Senate’s bipartisan progress and urge Congress to reauthorize these programs for our young people without delay.



U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA) today expressed her support for the Improving Child Nutrition Integrity and Access Act of 2016:

“The bipartisan Improving Child Nutrition Integrity and Access Act provides meaningful reforms that scale back some of the burdensome federal requirements for school lunches, return broad program oversight to local and state authorities, and safeguard taxpayer dollars.

“I’ve heard firsthand from Iowans that the meals being served and consumed by our students under current standards unnecessarily tie the hands of local schools. This bill would give our states and local schools greater flexibility to implement meal standards that work best for the countless number of children who depend on school lunch nutrition.

“I am proud to work with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to ensure our students have the needed quality child nutrition programs now and for future generations.”

The Improving Child Nutrition Integrity and Access Act of 2016 passed out of committee today by a voice vote and now heads to the Senate floor.

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2 Responses to U.S. Senate considering child nutrition programs

  1. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    January 23, 2016 at 9:16 am

    Are these the same people that keep calling me on how they will improve my business.. They are a political JOKE!

  2. Avatar

    A Concerned Democrat Reply Report comment

    January 20, 2016 at 7:59 pm

    Did you guys read about Hillary’s dump. On Tuesday she pooped a log over two and a half feet long and almost three inches wide. It is being investigated as a world record for woman dumps. According to reports, after taking several pictures, Bill carved up the fecal masterpiece, baked it and ate about half of it.