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Tuesday Morning - September 14, 2010

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September 14, 2010

Table of Contents

Child Nutrition Reauthorization Needs Your Help! Contact Congress Now!

First Lady Michelle Obama Honors New HealthierUS Challenge Schools in Louisiana

SNA Signs Onto Letter Asking Deficit Commission to Protect Anti-Hunger Efforts

USDA Officials Visit Texas School and California Schools, Discusses Childhood Obesity

Team Nutrition Training Grants, USDA Initiative to Combat Childhood Obesity

Recipes for Healthy Kids Challenge Announced by Secretary Vilsack

Purchase of Chicken Dark Meat Items Announced by USDA

SNA Legislative Action Center

Legislative Toolkit

Child Nutrition Reauthorization Needs Your Help! Contact Congress Now!

SNA is calling on all members to contact their Members of Congress and ask them to remove Section 409 from H.R. 5504, the House version of the Child Nutrition Reauthorization Act. If passed, Section 409 would, for the first time, establish Federal requirements for locally determined paid school meal prices. School nutrition programs would require schools to establish rules for the amount of per-meal revenue collected for paid meals. SNA is concerned that increasing school meal prices will result in a drop in participation and increase social stigma for children receiving free and reduced price meals, as well as place an increased financial burden on parents during a difficult economy.

Since last Tuesday, more than 730 action alerts have been sent to Congress. With 182 letters, Georgia is the state with the most action alerts sent to Congress. New York has submitted 51 and Ohio comes in third with 47 alerts. Florida SNA members have sent 36 action alerts. Kentucky rounds out the top five states with 32 alerts sent to their Members of Congress.
Please send an Action Alert to your Member of Congress, asking them to remove Section 409 from H.R. 5504. For a suggested letter, please visit the link below.

Child Nutrition Reauthorization Bill Needs Your Help!

First Lady Michelle Obama Honors New HealthierUS Challenge Schools in Louisiana

Last week, First Lady Michelle Obama honored the St. Tammany Parish, LA and Shelby County, AL school nutrition programs for achieving the HealthierUS Schools Challenge Gold Award of Distinction. The First Lady made the announcement at the Brock Elementary School in Slidell, LA, just north of New Orleans. In her remarks, the First Lady commended the school nutrition programs for using creativity in encouraging students to develop healthy nutrition habits. The First Lady also noted the connection between healthy eating, physical activity, and academic success. She also used the speech as an opportunity to push Congress to pass Child Nutrition Reauthorization before the end of the current legislative session.

To view the full transcript of the First Lady’s remarks, please visit the link below:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2010/09/08/remarks-first-lady-lets-move-back-school-event-slidell-louisiana

SNA Signs Onto Letter Asking Deficit Commission to Protect Anti-Hunger Efforts

SNA has joined several hundred other organizations by signing onto a letter calling on the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform (the “deficit commission”) to protect programs benefiting low-income Americans. The letter expresses the concern that the deficit commission may choose to cut or eliminate programs such as Social Security, Medicare, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and other assistance programs to cut the federal deficit. The letter asks the commission to pledge to consider programs that do not make the low-income worse off and to publically announce the impact of the proposals.

To view the complete letter, click on the follow link:

http://www.chn.org/pdf/2010/DeficitComLetterSigners.pdf (pdf)

USDA Officials Visit Texas School and California Schools, Discusses Childhood Obesity

USDA Deputy Under Secretary for Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Services Janey Thornton visited a Texas elementary school to highlight Obama Administration efforts to improve school meals and viewed newly installed kitchen equipment. During her September 7th visit to the Decker Elementary School in Austin, TX, Dr. Thornton highlighted how this equipment, funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, is helping to provide more nutritious meals and creating jobs in local communities.

Through the Recovery Act, USDA Food and Nutrition Service provided $100 million to National School Lunch Program state agencies for competitive grants to school food authorities for the purchase of school food service equipment to help schools stimulate their economies and support local communities. Texas' share was almost $11.5 million. Of that amount, Decker Elementary School received over $17,000 for kitchen equipment. The school replaced their deep fat fryers for convection ovens which will allow them to prepare healthier food for the children.

USDA's Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) Deputy Administrator for Special Nutrition Programs Audrey Rowe delivered the keynote address at the Childhood Obesity- A Call to Action Summit in Los Angeles on September 10, 2010, emphasizing the Obama Administration's efforts to combat childhood obesity and improve the health of children nationwide. Rowe also emphasized First Lady Michelle Obama's Let's Move! campaign and its goal to end childhood obesity within a generation.

Read USDA Officials Visit Texas Schools to Highlight Childhood Nutrition...

Read USDA Officials Visit California to Highlight Initiative to Combat Childhood Obesity... 

Team Nutrition Training Grants, USDA Initiative to Combat Childhood Obesity

On September 9, 2010, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced Team Nutrition Training Grants to 19 States to help children develop good nutrition and physical activity habits for healthier lifestyles. Nearly $5.5 million in funding will support efforts to help elementary and secondary schools applying for the HealthierUS School Challenge, a key component of the First Lady's Let's Move initiative to end childhood obesity within a generation. Team Nutrition Training Grants help States provide schools with nutrition education materials and resources for children and parents as well as technical assistance and training for school food service providers and communities.
Team Nutrition is a key component in the efforts of USDA's Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) to improve children's lifelong eating and physical activity habits by incorporating the principles of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and MyPyramid in school meals.

Read USDA Announces Team Nutrition Training Grants to Improve Health of America's Children

Recipes for Healthy Kids Challenge Announced by Secretary Vilsack

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced on September 7, 2010 the Recipes for Healthy Kids Challenge to improve school meals and the health of children across the nation through the creation of exciting new recipes for inclusion on school lunch menus. The competition - part of First Lady Michelle Obama's Let's Move! initiative - will draw on the talents of chefs, students, food service professionals, and parents or other community members working together to develop tasty, nutritious, kid-approved foods.

Recipes for Healthy Kids Challenge teams will have the opportunity to submit original recipes that meet nutritional requirements in three categories: whole grain foods, dark green and/or orange vegetables, and dry beans and peas (legumes). Submissions must be taste tested by at least 30 students who participate in the National School Lunch Program.

Read Secretary Vilsack Launches Recipes for Healthy Kids Challenge

Purchase of Chicken Dark Meat Items Announced by USDA

Last week, USDA announced that it will purchase up to $30 million of chicken dark meat items for the federal food nutrition assistance programs.

USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) purchases a variety of high-quality food products each year to support the National School Lunch Program, the School Breakfast Program, the Summer Food Service Program, the Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations, the Commodity Supplemental Food Program and The Emergency Food Assistance Program. USDA also makes emergency food purchases for distribution to victims of natural disasters.

Read USDA Announces Bonus Purchases of Chicken Dark Meat Items

State and Federal Legislation (login required)
State legislation can now be accessed on the Internet through Netscan. Use Username: schoolnutrition and Password: sna

Click State Legislation Instructions for steps to access state legislation through the service.


 
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