Tuesday Morning - July 12, 2022

1 big thing—New USDA policy memos: Keep Kids Fed Act implementation

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What’s new: The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently released several policy memos on school meal nationwide waiver extensions. The Keep Kids Fed Act extended key waivers to support meal access for Summer 2022 and School Year (SY) 2022–23. 

2. Latest research proves benefits of school meals

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What’s new: Two recently published studies present evidence of improved diet quality and classroom behavior for students participating in school meals. 

Go deeper: The USDA published a report finding improved nutritional intake for students enrolled in the NSLP. Participants scored higher on diet quality than nonparticipants, consuming more vegetables, fruit, milk products and mixed dishes compared with nonparticipants.

A University of Arkansas Medical Sciences’ (UAMS) research team discovered that schools providing breakfast after the school day begins (Breakfast After the Bell) experienced a decrease in student behavior issues. 

What’s next: Access the full USDA report here. Read more about the UAMS report here

3. SNA comments on Federal Register notices

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What’s new: SNA has submitted comments to USDA in response to Federal Register notices regarding the Development of Nutrition Education Messages and Products, Produce Safety University Nomination and Course Evaluation, and the Special Milk Program for Children. 


4. State legislative update

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Connecticut: United States Senator Richard Blumenthal visited Weaver High School in Hartford, Connecticut to announce the signing of the “Keep Kids Fed Act of 2022,” which extends universal free meals for children this summer and extends some school meal waivers through the 2022-23 school year.

Sen. Blumenthal

💭During his visit, he toured the school’s kitchen and was able to experience how the summer meal program operates. “For skeptics of the funding, it’s very hard to study on an empty stomach,” said U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal.

senator blumenthal of connecticut

Senator Blumenthal also indicated that while the new extension will not cover the cost of free lunches beyond the next school year, the bill is expected to return to Congress for review.

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