Health Through Stealth? “The School Wellness Ninja”

March 13, 2014

I’ve written a lot on this blog (and, really, I mean, a LOT — see the “Related Posts” below) about classroom birthday treats, soccer snacks and the many other ways in which kids are offered junk food by people other than their parents on a regular basis.  Each individual episode would be no big deal […]

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A New Guide to Getting Water Into School Cafeterias

March 11, 2014

One of the less talked about mandates of the 2010 Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act, the federal legislation overhauling school food, is a provision requiring schools to provide children with free, potable drinking water wherever school meals are served. It’s a great idea, of course, but as I explained in two posts here (one in 2011, […]

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Was I Too Quick to Condemn Ms. Obama’s School Junk Food Ad Ban?

March 7, 2014

Two days ago, I told you about proposed USDA rules, promoted by the First Lady and released on the fourth anniversary of her Let’s Move! initiative, which would curb the marketing of foods and beverages on school campuses.  Specifically, if adopted, the new rules would restrict on-campus advertising during the school day to foods and beverages meeting the […]

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STUDY: New School Lunch Rules Increase Kids’ Fruit & Vegetable Consumption

March 6, 2014

Last month I wrote a piece for Civil Eats describing current and forthcoming efforts by various factions to modify or roll  back some of the recent changes to school meals mandated by the 2010 Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act (HHFKA).  In particular, one facet of the new school meal regulations has generated quite a bit of […]

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Michelle Obama’s School Junk Food Advertising Ban: Why I’m Not Thrilled

March 5, 2014

Last week, First Lady Michelle Obama and the USDA made headlines by announcing a proposal to ban the marketing of junk food and sugary beverages on school campuses.  Timed to coincide with the fourth anniversary of Ms. Obama’s Let’s Move! initiative, the proposal would restrict on-campus advertising to only those products meeting the relatively stringent nutritional requirements […]

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Crazy to Ship Chicken to China for Processing? It’s Already Happening to Your Seafood

March 4, 2014

The Change.org petition I launched in January with Nancy Huehnergarth and Barbara Kowalcyk, protesting the inclusion of Chinese-processed chicken in school meals, now has over 308,000 signatures.  Clearly a lot of you share our concern about that country’s terrible food safety record. But are we creating a tempest in a teapot?  One refrain we’ve heard since launching […]

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Study: Early Childhood Obesity Drops 43%

February 26, 2014

By now you may have heard about surprising and welcome results from a new study in the Journal of the American Medical Association, which found a 43% drop in childhood obesity among American children aged 2 to 5.    In 2012, about 8%  of 2- to 5-year-olds were obese, decreasing from a rate of 14% in […]

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More Republican Support for Bill To Gut Healthier School Food

February 25, 2014

I hope some of you have had a chance to read my “State of the Tray” piece published in Civil Eats last week, which asked whether the school food gains achieved by the 2010 Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act (HHFKA) are now at risk. One of the developments I discussed in that piece was the ”Reducing Federal Mandates […]

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A Lunch Tray Wednesday Buffet!

February 19, 2014

In the old days on this blog, I’d serve up a “Friday Buffet” of news tidbits that didn’t fit anywhere else.  Today I’m bringing back the Buffet to share these little goodies with you: Update on Chicken Petition First, I wanted to let you know that our petition regarding chicken from China is now at […]

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State of the Tray: Are Healthier School Meals at Risk?

February 18, 2014

I’m so pleased to have a reported piece up on Civil Eats today in which I examine the question of whether the gains of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act may be at risk due to industry pressure and students’ resistance to healthier foods. I hope you’ll take a look! Do You Love The Lunch Tray? ♥♥♥ […]

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