Thousands to Gather for Nation’s Largest School Nutrition Event to Sample Food, Recipes and Share School Meal Successes, Challenges



Contact: Diane Pratt-Heavner  


Thousands to Gather for Nation’s Largest School Nutrition Event to Sample Food, Recipes and Share School Meal Successes, Challenges  


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School Nutrition Association’s Annual National Conference 2014 runs July 13-16 in Boston

National Harbor, MD (July 9, 2014) - From July 13-16, approximately 6,500 school nutrition professionals will gather at School Nutrition Association’s (SNA) 68th Annual National Conference (ANC) to taste test healthy foods and recipes, share best practices and participate in over 90 education sessions on strengthening meal programs. ANC, held at the Boston Convention Center, kicks off less than two weeks after new national nutrition requirements took effect for school meal programs.

Under nutrition standards introduced in 2012, cafeterias have been offering more whole grains, fruits and vegetables and limiting the calories and unhealthy fats in school meals. Effective July 1, 2014, school cafeterias must also meet new limits on sodium, ensure all grains are whole grain rich, double the amount of fruits or vegetables offered at breakfast and ensure students take half a cup of produce with every meal. Schools must also meet newly implemented Smart Snacks in Schools rules, which limit calories, fat, sodium and portion sizes for foods and beverages sold in school vending machines, snack bars and a la carte lines during the school day.

SNA offers complimentary press registration for credentialed media. To register to attend ANC 2014, contact Diane Pratt-Heavner at or (703) 576-7526. Cameras and interviews are permitted only with permission and advanced press registration.

Although SNA has requested flexibility to support school meal programs challenged under the standards, ANC offers a glimpse into how the Association has been consistently supporting members’ efforts to meet all of the requirements.

ANC 2014 will offer a wide variety of education sessions, numerous networking opportunities and the largest exhibit hall in school nutrition, all geared to helping schools meet nutrition standards, increase student meal participation and operate financially viable programs.

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) officials will participate throughout the conference, hosting education sessions on the latest regulations, offering resources from the Exhibit Hall’s “USDA Lane,” and hosting a culinary demonstration using USDA Foods ingredients. SNA has also invited numerous partner organizations, such as Action for Healthy Kids, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Alliance for a Healthier Generation, Pew Charitable Trust and Share Our Strength, to present at education sessions, or share resources at the Partner Pavilion on the Exhibit floor.

ANC 2014 offers an opportunity to understand trends and challenges facing school nutrition programs nationwide:

  • Education sessions on topics including: reducing sodium in menus, motivating kids to eat healthy, planning cost-effective menus, expanding school breakfast, managing food allergies and more.
  • The largest exhibit hall in the school nutrition industry: approximately 180,000 square feet of exhibits from 400 companies, partner organizations, non-profits and USDA divisions. Exhibitors include suppliers of food, beverages, equipment, software/hardware technology, nutrition education and menu planning resources. On display will be a wide variety of whole grain products, low fat and low sodium items, fruits and vegetables, low fat dairy foods, nutritious snacks and much more.
  • Six culinary demonstrations featuring innovative school recipes like Balsamic Grilled Pesto Chicken Sandwiches and Spicy Apple Wedges with Cucumber Slices.
  • General session speakers include: Amy Purdy, world-class adaptive snowboarder, actress/model and motivational speaker; Billy Shore, Founder and Chief Executive Officer or Share Our Strength; and motivational speaker, Aric Bostick.

About School Nutrition Association:
The School Nutrition Association (SNA) is a national, non-profit professional organization representing 55,000 school nutrition professionals across the country. Founded in 1946, SNA and its members are dedicated to making healthy school meals and nutrition education available to all students. For more information about ANC, visit


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