Applying the USDA’s proposed adjustments to school meals, which would progressively minimize the amount of sugar and sodium authorized, needs more funding, reported Whitney Thornton, president of the Maine College Diet Affiliation. “[P]remade and prepackaged products are what a large amount of college districts have to go to, simply because they will not have staff or you should not have the funding to use a lot more scratch recipes,” Thornton claimed.
Source link In recent years, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has taken steps to improve the quality of nutrition in the American diet. As part of this effort, they have set forth new standards to ensure that food sold in schools meets the USDA’s recommended nutritional criteria. These standards include limits on fat, sodium and sugar as well as increases in whole grains and fruits and vegetables. While these standards are welcome news for many health-conscious Americans, implementing them in schools around the country is proving to be a costly endeavor.
With the new USDA standards in place, schools are scrambling to meet the requirements set forth by the department, including purchasing the necessary kitchen equipment to make natural and healthy meals, as well as new menu items that are compliant with the standards. All of these implementations require serious funding, something that many schools simply do not have. Furthermore, many schools also lack the personnel, training and certification required to meet the standards.
In order to ensure that schools are able to properly implement the new USDA standards, it is essential that they receive additional funding. This funding should cover the costs of equipment and personnel necessary to meet the standards, as well as providing schools with resources to train and certify their staff to prepare nutritious meals according to the guidelines. In addition to funding, it is essential that the USDA provide free nutritional education materials to all schools in order to raise awareness among students and parents about the new standards and their importance.
It is only through proper funding and education that the new USDA standards can be properly implemented in schools across the country. With the right resources, American students will have access to healthier meal options, leading to improved health and nutrition.