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Tuesday Morning - October 22, 2013

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October 22, 2013

Table of Contents

Federal Policy

Presidential Proclamation for National School Lunch Week
@SchoolLunch Shadows Alexandria City Schools
Update on Dietary Guidelines Process
USDA FNS Requests Information Related to School Nutrition and Meal Cost
Competitive Foods Update: SNA Submits Comments to Interim Final Rule
October is National Farm to School Month!

State Policy

Kansas State School Board to Review Snack Rules
New York City Group Aims to Make School Lunch Mayoral Election
Schools in Texas Ease into Universal Breakfast Program
Nebraska Schools Lunches Go to the Worms

Reports, Webinars, and Events

SNA’s October Issue of trendSETS Focuses on School Breakfast
Farm to School Census Results and Associated Website: Scheduled for Release Tuesday, October 22nd
Farm to School Tweet UP! Scheduled for Wednesday, October 23rd
Submit Proposals for the 7th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference: Powering Up

Upcoming Meetings and Events


Federal Policy

Presidential Proclamation for National School Lunch Week

On October 11th, there was a Presidential Proclamation declaring National School Lunch Week (NSLW) as October 14-18, 2013. You can view the proclamation here. Last week, during the NSLW, school cafeterias nationwide hosted the “School Lunch Across the USA” campaign to spotlight healthy changes, as well as the nutritious regional recipes, ingredients and traditions that make every school cafeteria unique. To learn more about the 2013 celebration, click here.

@SchoolLunch Shadows Alexandria City Schools

As part of NSLW on Wednesday, October 16th, @SchoolLunch went behind the scenes for a day to see what a day looks like with school meals. We tweeted throughout the day and plan to write up follow-up stories and blogs to share with a wider audience about the lessons we learned. To read our tweets from the day, click here.

Update on Dietary Guidelines Process

The second meeting of the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, originally scheduled for October 3-4, 2013, was cancelled due to the government shutdown. The meeting will be rescheduled and announced through a notice published in the Federal Register at least 15 days prior to the meeting. The Federal Register notice, meeting registration (including requests to make oral testimony), and meeting information will be posted online at www.DietaryGuidelines.gov when available.

USDA FNS Requests Information Related to School Nutrition and Meal Cost

USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) has released a request for information in the Federal Register. Comments are invited for their School Nutrition and Meal Cost Study. The study comes at a time of unprecedented change for the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and School Breakfast Program (SBP). The new requirements are intended to better align USDA meals and snacks with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and to improve participating students' food and nutrient intake. Complying with the new requirements might affect the costs of producing school lunches and breakfasts. Conducting this study at this historic juncture will provide FNS with crucial information about the effects of the new meal standards on nutritional quality and the cost of school meals. No national study has concurrently examined the cost of producing school meals, the nutritional profile of school meals and the amount of plate waste in school meals. For more details and instructions for submitting information, click here.

Competitive Foods Update: SNA Submits Comments to Interim Final Rule

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) has published an interim final rule for Competitive Foods entitled, National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program: Nutrition Standards for All Foods Sold in School. This interim final rule amends the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program regulations to establish nutrition standards for all foods sold in schools. To review SNA’s comments on the rule, click here.

SNA reconvened the Competitive Foods Task Force to review and analyze the rule, as well as to develop a position in response to the rule, which was submitted to USDA following Board approval. SNA strongly encourages members to review the comments and utilize them to develop your own, your district’s, or your state’s position and submit. Written comments on the rule are accepted at Regulations.gov until October 28, 2013.

To view more details and supporting documents on the process SNA took in development of its position, visit www.schoolnutrition.org/competitivefoods.

October is National Farm to School Month!

The National Farm to School Network invites you to partner in promoting Farm to School Month throughout October. Visit www.farmtoschoolmonth.org for more details and to access a host of resources available to help you plan your celebration. Also, don’t forget to use #F2SMonth when you talk about Farm to School Month on social media.


State Policy

Kansas State School Board to Review Snack Rules

On October 15, the Kansas State School Board reviewed the impact of the USDA Smart Snack Rules on the state. Cheryl Johnson, director of the state education department's nutrition programs, told the board it would be asked to amend its existing wellness and nutrition policies to reflect the changes. To learn more, visit this link.

New York City Group Aims to Make School Lunch Mayoral Election

The Lunch 4 Learning campaign, comprised of 85 advocacy organizations, is working to urge the next mayor to enact a free lunch plan for all students, regardless of income. According to Lunch 4 Learning, universal school meals would serve an additional 120,000 students, and would create about 1,000 new jobs. The cost would be about $20 per student, per year, or about $20 million. To learn more, visit this link.

Schools in Texas Ease into Universal Breakfast Program

Elementary Schools in Denton, Texas, are finding implementation of universal breakfast to be easier than first suspected. The schools are implementing the new program as a way to prepare for the state-wide implementation of new Texas Law in 2014-2015. By beginning now in some schools, they hope to learn from mistakes and improve on the process before universal breakfast begins across the state. To learn more, visit this link.

Nebraska Schools Lunches Go to the Worms

Waste from school meals in Nebraska are being turned into fertilizer via worms in a new compost program. Kimball Junior/Senior High School has started a new 'vermicompost' program, where leftover fruits and veggies are fed to worms. To learn more, visit this link.


Reports, Webinars, and Events

SNA’s October Issue of trendSETS Focuses on School Breakfast

The October issue of SNA’s trendSETS newsletter is now available to members and focuses on school breakfast. This issue of trendSETS includes information from an analysis of elementary school breakfast menus. Fruit, cereal, pancakes and juice are among the most common items on these school breakfast menus. In addition to common school breakfast items, the newsletter provides insights into how these menus have changed over the past four years. Also included is feedback from a group of school nutrition directors on how their school breakfast programs are going so far this school year and the changes they have made to meet the new breakfast requirements.

trendSETS is a quarterly e-newsletter that contains information on "hot topics" in school nutrition. The newsletter provides insights into school nutrition trends using data and information collected from SNA members. This newsletter is now available as a membership benefit to all SNA members. To access the trendSETS newsletter, visit the Resource Center or click here.

Farm to School Census Results and Associated Website: Scheduled for Release Tuesday, October 22nd

This past spring USDA surveyed over 13,000 public school districts to determine the prevalence of farm to school approaches throughout the country. Results show a significant percentage of school districts are already engaged in offering healthy, local products in the school cafeteria, with the positive trend continuing into the future. Secretary Vilsack will release results at the national, state and district level on Tuesday, October 22nd via www.fns.usda.gov/farmtoschool/census.

Farm to School Tweet UP! Scheduled for Wednesday, October 23rd

@USDANutrition will host Farm to School National Director Deborah Kane on Wednesday, October 23, 2013, at 3:00 pm ET for a twitter chat on farm to school. Kane will answer questions about the Census, talk farm to school strategies, and hear from schools across the country just starting out or actively engaged in farm to school programming. What’s growing in your school garden right now? Who’s your school’s favorite farmer? Tell us on October 23rd by using #USDAF2S or #healthiernextgen. This is also a great time to be using #F2SMonth. (See additional information for distribution to your networks below.)

Submit Proposals for the 7th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference: Powering Up

The National Farm to Cafeteria Conference will convene more than 1,000 diverse stakeholders from across the farm to cafeteria movement who are working to source local food for institutional cafeterias and foster a culture of food and agricultural literacy across America. The conference will take place April 15-18, 2014, in Austin, Texas. Submit your proposal for a workshop, poster or lightning talk by November 8. For full details and information, you can download the official request for proposals here. For more information, visit farmtocafeteriaconference.org. Registration opens in January 2014.


Upcoming Meetings and Events

October 25, 2013, Vermont Annual Meeting, Shelburne, VT
October 29-30, 2013, Massachusetts State Conference, Worcester, MA


 
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