by Marion Nestle
May 15 2014

Action Alert #2: stop congressional micromanagement of school nutrition standards

Congressional interference with school nutrition standards is looming large on the horizon.

Margo Wootan of CSPI is collecting signatures on a petition to stop this.  She writes:

Some members of Congress are playing politics with our children’s health. We expect they will act on Tuesday May 20 to gut nutrition standards through the appropriations process.

They might say they just want to provide schools with a little more “flexibility,” but their changes would roll back standards on salt, whole grains, fruits/vegetables, and snacks.

These are the same people who legislated that pizza is a vegetable (because it contains a little tomato sauce)!

…Thankfully, ninety percent of schools now meet the updated nutrition standards for school lunch, helping millions of students get more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. 

In summary:

  • Congress is trying to micromanage  school nutrition standards to win political points.
  • Schools need support and technical assistance, not a free pass to serve junk to kids.
  • And kids need nutrition standards based on science, not politics.SIg

SIgn the petition.  Better yet, write you own letter.

  • Dr. M.O.

    No, no no Marion!

    Your final summary bullet point is completely incorrect!!

    yourself, have advocated tirelessly for food based rules, not
    science-based. I believe we are all in agreement on this blog that pure
    science is a dreadful hindrance to getting the change in food
    regulations we all demand. If USDA resorts to purely nutrient-based
    criteria our mortal enemies in Big Food and Big Ag will prevail. We must
    continue to demand food-based rulings such as no processed food,
    sustainable food only, latest most popular food categories (such as
    kale, Greek yogurt, etc), current favorite entrees of Michael Pollan ad
    Mark Bittman, and, of course the urgent NO GMO necessity. It is so
    terribly disheartening when someone like you does a sudden 180 degree
    turn in the midst of our parade. Please, please correct your reckless
    public statement. We count on you and other lieutenants to keep the rank
    and file marching forward and looking sharp.

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