REP. FUDGE APPLAUDS NEW SCHOOL MEAL STANDARDS
WASHINGTON, DC--The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) unveiled new standards for school meals today that will help nearly 32 million kids receive more nutritious foods during the school day. The new standards require both fruit and vegetables to be offered every day of the week, substantially increase offerings of whole grain-rich foods, ensure proper portion size based on a child's age, and focus on reducing the amounts of saturated fat, trans fats and sodium.
Congresswoman Marcia L. Fudge (OH-11), a strong advocate for children's health and wellness, applauded the new requirements and thanked the administration for raising school meal standards for the first time in more than fifteen years.
"Nearly one in three children is overweight or obese. These children are on track to have a shorter lifespan than their parents, which is simply unacceptable. Improving standards is the first step in combating preventable diseases like diabetes and heart disease due to overweight and obesity. Let's take this momentum and continue to improve the foods our children eat."
When proposed new standards were issued in 2011, Congresswoman Fudge worked with USDA to ensure they would not adversely affect the budgets of local schools. The new standards are expected to cost $3.2 billion over the next five years, less than half the estimated cost of the proposed standards.
Congresswoman Fudge is dedicated to the cause of eradicating childhood obesity. In the last year, she sponsored:
- H.Res. 2795, Fit for Life, a comprehensive approach to addressing the obesity crisis by improving the quality of and access to food, advancing preventative measures, expanding treatment of obesity in children and encouraging physical activity in underserved communities, was introduced in 2011.
- H.Res. 339, designates September 2011 as National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month. In Ohio and around the nation during the month of September, parents, schools, and health care providers will promote fitness and nutrition for our kids. The bill has support from over 30 national organizations.
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