Michelle Obama’s Lunch Tyranny May Be Coming to an End

by Steve MacDonald

School lunch roomThe School Nutrition Association (SNA) which represents 54,000 school cafeteria professionals see the Trump Presidency as an opportunity to roll back some of the overreaches of the Obama years.

SNA supports maintaining robust federal nutrition standards to ensure all students receive nutritious, well-balanced meals at school. However, some overly prescriptive rules have resulted in unintended consequences, including reduced student lunch participation, higher costs and food waste.

Federal meddling in the form of S. 3307, the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010, has been more like the healthy food goes in the trashcan and kids are still hungry Act.

A recent report from The Pew Charitable Trusts and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation found that despite strategies to promote healthier school meals, more than 60% of school nutrition directors faced challenges meeting the standards in the 2014/15 School Year. Sodium and whole grain requirements were cited as the top challenges.

So we are clear the SNA opposes too much local control. They oppose block grants and are fans of the farm bill subsidies the FDA gets and gives for student lunch programs. But they are not blinded by the progressive “science” of social engineering when it comes to feeding kids. The problems of federal overreach are apparent, even to them.

For example, the rules for sodium in the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act get so strict that they will take healthy food off an already crippled menu that most kids are avoiding.

Naturally occurring sodium present in meat, milk and other low-fat dairy foods will force schools to take nutritious choices off the menu, including many soups, entrée salads and lowfat deli sandwiches.

Naturally occurring sodium present in meat, milk and other low-fat dairy foods will force schools to take nutritious choices off the menu, including many soups, entrée salads and lowfat deli sandwiches.

And the whole grain bread requirements make no sense at all.

…schools are struggling with limited availability of specialty whole grain items and meeting students’ regional and cultural preferences for certain refined grains. Schools should be permitted to serve white rice, pasta, grits, bagels or tortillas on occasion, just like most families do.e.

New Hampshire Senators’ Judd Gregg and Jeanne Shaheen voted for the bill before the 2010 elections. Ousted House members Paul Hodes and Carol Shea-Porter voted for it on their way out the door after the Tea Party Revolution took Democrat control from the US House and handed it to Republicans. Mr. Obama signed it promptly, and Michelle Obama became the self-proclaimed school lunch tsar.

The rest is history. And with any luck, the Trump Administration and Congress will make the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act history and rein in the FDA.

States and local officials are more than capable of managing these details including menus, controlling costs, and free lunches for those who need them. Just ask them. They’ll be happy to make all the decisions. That’s why they’re there.

 

H/T Washington Examiner c/o PJ Media

Related:

Federal Mandate Drives Up School Lunch Prices in Merrimack NH
S.3307 The Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act…Guess Who Voted for It?
A Conservative Solution to The Public School Lunch Circular Firing Squad

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