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Tuesday Morning - December 11, 2012

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December 11, 2012

Table of Contents

USDA Eliminates Weekly Grain and Protein Maximums for 2012-13 School Year

USDA Releases a Memo Extending Deadlines on School Food Authority Paid Lunch Price

USDA Launches USDA Foods Mobile Site

SNA Public Policy and Legislation Committee Drafting Issue Paper

Report Released - 2012 Shape of the Nation Report: Status of Physical Education in the USA

Nominations Sought for 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee

Share Our Strength Expanding No Kid Hungry Allies Program

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USDA Eliminates Weekly Grain and Protein Maximums for 2012-13 School Year

During the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) annual State Agency 2012 Training Workshop, hosted by SNA, USDA officials announced the release of new guidance which eliminates the weekly maximums for grains and proteins under the new meal pattern for the remainder of the 2012-13 school year. Calorie maximums for school meals will remain in place. SNA President Sandra Ford, SNS, who presented at the meeting, commented, “School nutrition professionals have faced significant menu planning, operating, financial challenges and more as a result of the new meal pattern requirements. USDA’s new guidance acknowledges those challenges and gives school meal programs more flexibility. By easing weekly maximums for grains and proteins but maintaining calorie limits, USDA protects the nutritional integrity of the new standards while giving school meal programs more time to design healthy menus that meet both the new standards and students’ tastes.”

For the SNA news story announcing the new guidance, click here. To view the USDA guidance, click here.

Further worth noting is that Reuters, National Journal, and Education Week have all asked for comments from SNA regarding the USDA flexibilities. For the Reuters story featuring comments from SNA President Sandra Ford, click here.

USDA Releases a Memo Extending Deadlines on School Food Authority Paid Lunch Price

Due to the workload surrounding the new meal pattern implementation certification activity, USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) has granted a two-month extension to the deadline for the FNS-828 data submissions for this year only. For SY 2012-13, the FNS-828 reports will be due by January 30, 2013. To view the USDA memo, click here.

USDA Launches USDA Foods Mobile Site

Last week at the USDA State Agency 2012 Training Workshop hosted by SNA, USDA announced the launch of its new USDA Foods Mobile site for use on smartphones and tablets. It is currently designed foremost for use by schools and school nutrition professionals, but the Department expects to broaden the site’s capabilities to other program components in the near future. The mobile site will allow for school nutrition professionals to rapidly and easily access key information such as the current meal pattern guidelines, talking points for parents and other interested parties, and which foods are currently available through the USDA Foods Program. Additionally, schools will be able to locate contact information for their state agencies, as well as information on qualifying for the program. The launch of the new mobile site should assist all school nutrition professionals by streamlining access to information for those constantly on their feet. To check out the new site, click here.

SNA Public Policy and Legislation Committee Drafting Issue Paper

SNA’s Committee on Public Policy and Legislation will be convening at National Harbor, Md., on December 13, 2012, to draft the 2013 Legislative Issue Paper. The Issue Paper will be released pending the Board’s approval. Stay tuned for the release of this important document that drives SNA’s legislative agenda for the coming year and the 113th Congress.

Report Released - 2012 Shape of the Nation Report: Status of Physical Education in the USA

The National Association for Sport and Physical Education and the American Heart Association have released the 2012 Shape of the Nation Report: Status of Physical Education in the USA. This periodic report provides a very useful summary of PE requirements in each state and other analyses of physical education programs. To read the full report, click here.

Nominations Sought for 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee

The Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Agriculture (USDA) are accepting nominations to the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (DGAC) until 6:00 pm on Tuesday, December 11, 2012. This date has been updated from previous announcements. The departments are welcoming input from all sectors in responding to the request for nominations of individuals to serve on this important Committee. Self-nominations are also welcomed. To view the complete announcement, as well as the federal register notice, visit www.dietaryguidelines.gov.

Share Our Strength Expanding No Kid Hungry Allies Program

In 2011, Share Our Strength launched the No Kid Hungry Allies Program and selected 13 nonprofit organizations in 12 states across the country to fight childhood hunger. These organizations have expertise in anti-hunger issues, child nutrition programs and work with low-income families; demonstrated the ability to develop creative strategies for ending childhood hunger; and presented a long-term, metric-driven plan with innovative solutions to ending child hunger in their community. This year, they are expanding the No Kid Hungry Allies program and are looking for additional organizations to join the fight to end childhood hunger. If you know of a nonprofit that may be a good fit, please direct them to http://nokidhungry.org/allies to learn more.


 
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