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Nutrition, Obesity, Pediatrics

Poll shows strong support for extending national nutrition standards beyond the school cafeteria

Earlier this year, the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced the first major revision of school meal standards in more than 15 years in an effort to reduce childhood obesity rates. In the coming months, the federal agency is expected to extend those rules to food and beverage items sold outside the cafeteria. Poll results released today suggest a majority of Americans would favor nutritional requirements for snack and a la carte foods sold in vending machines and campus stores at schools.

The nationwide telephone survey (.pdf) of 1,010 registered voters was conducted Jan. 11-16 and commissioned by the Kids’ Safe & Healthful Foods Project, a joint project of the Pew Charitable Trusts and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Results showed 80 percent of respondents support federal rules that encourage consumption of fruits, vegetables and low-fat dairy products and limiting the calories, fat and sodium in foods.

Additional findings offer a snapshot of participants’ sentiments on the nutritional value of non-cafeteria food and beverages sold in schools:

  • Eighty-three percent of voters said they think that food sold in school vending machines is not really healthy/nutritious or only somewhat healthy/nutritious, compared with just 5 percent who think that vending machine food is totally/mostly healthy and nutritious.
  • Sixty-eight percent of voters said they think that food sold in cafeteria a la carte lines is not really healthy/nutritious or only somewhat healthy/nutritious, compared with 21 percent who think that it is totally/mostly healthy and nutritious.
  • Sixty-eight percent of voters said they think that food sold in school stores is not really healthy/nutritious or only somewhat healthy/nutritious, compared with 10 percent who think that it is totally/mostly healthy and nutritious.

Previously: USDA urges school to purchase food from local farmers, Study shows federal school lunch program doesn’t make the grade and School nutrition standards come into the 21st century
Photo by U.S. Department of Agriculture

One Response to “ Poll shows strong support for extending national nutrition standards beyond the school cafeteria ”

  1. New federal nutrition standards mean healthier school lunches | Scope Blog Says:

    [...] Packard joins forces with Ravenswood School District to feed families during the summer break, Poll shows strong support for extending national nutrition standards beyond the school cafeteria and Better school lunches – in China Photo by Martin [...]

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