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Tuesday Morning - September 23, 2008

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September 23, 2008

 

Table of Contents

National School Lunch Week Is Coming!

Educate Your Community: Spread the Word About School Lunch!

USDA Purchases Up to 3.6 Million Pounds of Fresh Tomatoes

SNA PAC Hosts Fundraiser for Senator Harkin

SNA Submits Comments to USDA on HACCP Rule

SNF Webinar Wednesdays: The Impact of Rising Food Costs

Cafeteria Site Visit 101 – Tools for Connecting with Members of Congress

Hurry! Deadline Approaching for ANC Call for Proposals

Nutrient Rich Foods: A New Approach to Dietary Guidance?

State Legislative Update

Florida District Kicks Off Year-Long Wellness Program with PBS

 

In Every Issue

Legislative Action Center

Legislative Toolkit

PR Toolkit

State Policy Index

State and Federal Legislation

PPL Committee

 

National School Lunch Week Is Coming!

National School Lunch Week 2008 is just around the corner, the week of October 13-17.   This year is the final installment of the Vote for School Lunch Campaign, pitting returning candidates Pete Pizza and Biff Burger against new nominees Larry Lasagna, Gloria Grilled Cheese, and Petunia Pita Pocket in a race for the “President of School Lunch.”  Get into the action by visiting the official Vote for School Lunch website and casting your vote for your favorite school lunch.  School nutrition professionals planning “Vote” activities for their programs should visit the  Vote for School Lunch Resource page for more information about the candidates and activities for students.

During this presidential election year, a number of school districts across the country are planning special “Vote” events for students.  Jefferson County, Ky., Warren, Mich., and Wallingford, Conn., are a few of the markets planning events.   SNA Headquarters is also tentatively planning a briefing on the major issues facing school lunch program for Members of Congress.  The briefing will have a “Vote for School Lunch” tie in to showcase some of the high-quality, healthy meals served to students every day.

 

Educate Your Community: Spread the Word About School Lunch!

eycWhat’s the school lunch IQ of your community?  Do your district’s parents, grandparents, and school officials know that children who eat school meals consume more fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat dairy than students who get their lunch from other sources?  Do they know that school lunches are a better value than lunches brought from home?  If your district needs to study up, help Educate Your Community from November 17 – 21, 2008!

This year, SNA is hosting the first annual Educate Your Community Week.  This week is a time for SNA members to begin clearing up any misconceptions their communities may have about the school meal programs.  Visit the Educate Your Community page for more information.

 

USDA Purchases Up to 3.6 Million Pounds of Fresh Tomatoes

The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced last week that it will purchase up to 3.6 million pounds of fresh tomatoes for the child nutrition programs and other food assistance programs.  Each year, the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service purchases a variety of food products for the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) to distribute to the National School Lunch Program, School Breakfast Program, Summer Food Service Program, and other domestic food assistance programs. 

USDA Announces Purchase of Up to 3.6 Million Pounds of Fresh Tomatoes

SNA PAC Hosts Fundraiser for Senator Harkin

SNA PAC hosted a fundraising breakfast last week in honor of Senator Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), Chairman of the Senate Agriculture Committee. The breakfast had excellent turnout and was attended by a variety of allied organizations and SNA affiliated groups.   During the breakfast, SNA staff was able to discuss ideas for Child Nutrition Reauthorization 2009 with Chairman Harkin and several of his staff members.  The breakfast was a great jumpstart for the 2009 Reauthorization process.

SNA Submits Comments to USDA on HACCP Rule

Last week the School Nutrition Association responded to a request from USDA posted in the Federal Register in August on the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) requirement for schools. The proposed USDA Food and Nutrition Service rule seeks to formally establish the requirements already in effect for a school food safety program based on HACCP principles. SNA solicited feedback from members and developed comments that focus on the following recommendations (1) the proposed rule should recognize steps already taken by School Food Authorities; (2) additional guidance regarding the process format is advisable; (3) additional training may be needed; (4) the proposed record keeping requirements may be burdensome; (5) the cost of these requirements may be more than a growing number of School Food Authorities can bear without additional federal support; and (6) there is a need for a phase-in period before the proposed standards become final. See link below to read the full letter.

SNA Comments on HACCP Rule 

 

SNF Webinar Wednesdays: The Impact of Rising Food Costs

wwThe School Nutrition Foundation (SNF) in partnership with Rich Products Corporation will be offering a FREE webinar on Wednesday, October 8, 2008, entitled “Paring Food Costs: Comparing Apples to Apples.” This webinar will delve head-first into the food cost crisis by addressing problems currently faced by school nutrition directors in school districts of all sizes. Participants will listen to three peers engage in a detailed, live dialogue on how they are addressing this issue in each of their districts. The webinar will include data from SNA’s study on food costs and will provide resources for communicating information on the food cost crisis to parents, school officials, and other stakeholders.

For more information on this webinar, including where and how to register, please click here or visit www.schoolnutrition.org/foodcosts. SNA members may earn 1 continuing education unit (CEU) for participating in the webinar. Instructions on how to obtain your CEU can be found by clicking on the URL above.

 

Cafeteria Site Visit 101 – Tools for Connecting with Members of Congress

Meeting with a Member of Congress, or their staff, is a highly effective way of showcasing the work you do as a school nutrition professional.  Holding a site visit of your cafeteria allows them to see first hand how the school nutrition programs operate, as well as demonstrating your expertise and knowledge as a professional.  To help you prepare for a site visit, SNA has developed Cafeteria Site Visit 101, a new toolkit that includes helpful tips and a checklist.  Visit Cafeteria Site Visit 101 for more information.

Cafeteria Site Visit 101 

 

Hurry! Deadline Approaching for ANC Call for Proposals

SNA’s Call for Proposals for the 2009 Annual National Conference in Las Vegas will close on September 30, 2008. Submit your proposal to present a 1-hour concurrent breakout session through the ANC 2009 Call for Proposals website at: http://docs.schoolnutrition.org/meetingsandevents/anc2009/cfp.asp

Proposals will be selected this fall based on the programming priorities of the SNA Annual National Conference Steering Committee. Notification for all proposals will be sent via email in January 2009.

 

Nutrient Rich Foods: A New Approach to Dietary Guidance?

Traditionally, nutrition policy has centered on decreasing intake of foods that are associated with weight gain or overweight-related illnesses. The low fat diet is an example of recommendations to eat less foods high in fat and saturated fat and more low fat foods like fruits and vegetables and lean proteins. Increasingly, a different concept in nutrition guidance is gaining popularity. This alternate approach, the Nutrient Rich Foods approach, is based on a long-standing principle in nutrition guidance – nutrient density. Foods that provide high amounts of vitamins and minerals and relatively fewer calories are nutrient-dense or nutrient rich. Foods that are low in nutrient density are foods that supply calories but relatively small amounts of vitamins and minerals. For additional information about this approach, please visit these links:

Nutrient Rich Foods: A New Approach to Dietary Guidance 

Nutrient Rich Foods

 

State Legislative Update

The Michigan House of Representatives recently passed a bill that would help create farm-to-school initiatives for schools throughout the state.  The plan, which passed with a bipartisan majority, would:

  1. Encourage schools to serve locally grown, fresh produce in the cafeteria.
  2. Encourage schools to include local farmers, processors, and suppliers when writing and awarding bids.
  3. Incorporate the Select-Michigan program into schools, assisting them in designating farm grown products for schools.

The legislation now moves to the state Senate for consideration.

The Pennsylvania House of Representatives passed a resolution this week supporting the School Breakfast Program.  The resolution also recognized the Philadelphia School District for being selected to the USDA School Breakfast Program Expansion Initiative.  In the resolution, the Pennsylvania House recognized the important role school breakfast programs play in providing students with nutritious, healthy meals and helping students achieve academic success.

 

Florida District Kicks Off Year-Long Wellness Program with PBS

ocThe Orange County, Fla. School District kicked off a year-long wellness program with celebrity chef Jon Ashton and PBS Kids Host Miss Rosa.  The wellness program is a county-wide initiative supported by Produce for Kids, PBS KIDS and Publix Supermarkets.  The program is part of a national campaign to encourage to raise awareness about the role of fruits and vegetables in a health diet.  The Orange County School District is the first school district in the country to participate in the program. 

Orange County Schools Event 

 

SNA Legislative Action Center

Legislative Toolkit

Educate Your Community

PR Toolkit

State Policy Index

PPL Committee 

 

 


 
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