Full Article

As the new Editor of the Journal of Child Nutrition and Management, I am excited to present the Spring issue.  As brief introduction, I am a faculty member at Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa where I have been for 15 years. Prior to joining Iowa State, I worked in healthcare as a clinical dietitian and later, as a foodservice manager.  While I have been in this editor role for only a couple months, I am looking forward to the future of the Journal. I was first introduced to the Journal during my graduate studies and would not have envisioned that one day I would assume the editor role. The focus of the Journal is to disseminate research that is helpful to practitioners and researchers in child nutrition programs. This is the overall intent of applied research, wherein data are collected and used to help develop practical solutions.

I would be remise if I did not thank those who played major roles in getting this issue ready for dissemination. First and foremost, to the former editor, Dr. Catherine Strohbehn, who completed the “heavy lifting” for this issue including having all articles through the peer review process and in final phases of editing.  Dr. Strohbehn has been most gracious in mentoring me in this new role; she has served as an advocate for child nutrition throughout her career.  Mr. David Johnson, RD, PhD Candidate, has been invaluable in handling formatting details and organizing our work on this issue. Mr. Johnson’s interest in child nutrition programs stems from exposure during his dietetic internship. To all authors and reviewers, thank you for your dedication to the Journal; I will seek your continued support as we move forward.

 In This Issue

This issue of the Journal has four Research in Action articles and two Research Briefs. The Research in Action articles cover a range of topics including food choices at school, motivations for purchasing school meals, food defense, and access to food during summers. In their article, Gilmour, Gill, and Loudon interviewed United Kingdom catering managers working in schools to determine their perceptions of what influenced adolescents’ school food choices. Dhillon and Arendt utilized survey research design and assessed why guardians in the Midwest opted to purchase school lunch for their child(ren) as opposed to packing a lunch. Sauer, Roberts, Paez, Cole, and Shanklin assessed what school nutrition programs are doing to prevent intentional acts of food contamination; they interviewed 320 school food authorities. Sather, Schumacher, Lanier, Fehrenbacher, and Bardwell quantified the impact of summer mobile feeding sites in Bloomington, Illinois.

The Research Briefs cover interesting topic areas, training and children’s books. Rushing, Sneed, Curwood, and Johnson determined what state agency child nutrition program professionals preferred regarding training topics, format, and delivery method. Geraldes and Spaccarotella analyzed popular children’s books for nutrition and gardening messages; behaviors toward produce represented in these books were then compared to USDA Recommendations.

Lastly, a comprehensive USDA Food and Nutrition Service Research update is provided by Rosenthal and Lovellette. Recent and future projects are described.

You will note that due to transitioning to the American Psychological Association (APA) Publication Manual, Seventh Edition, this issue and the next will contain articles that use both edition 6 and 7. Given the timeframe between submission and publication, it is expected that after the Fall 2021 issue, all published articles will use edition 7.

I hope this issue finds you safe and well.  As you wrap up your semester or school year, I hope you are able to reflect on all that has been accomplished during this unusually year. With the upcoming summer months, may you find time to enjoy some peace and relaxation.

Happy reading…

Susan W. Arendt, PhD, RD, FAND
Editor, Journal of Child Nutrition and Management
School Nutrition Association