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Tuesday Morning - September 24, 2013

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September 24, 2013

Table of Contents

Federal Policy

A Call for Advocating Your Healthy School Lunch Photos in “Fed Up” Youth Campaign
Apply for the HealthierUS School Challenge Today
SNA and the Alliance for a Healthier Generation Breakfast Materials Still Available
2015 Dietary Guidelines Process is in Full Swing
Competitive Foods Update: Interim Final Rule Published

State Policy

Vermont Schools Publish Cookbook
Ohio State Senator Helps Serve Breakfast
Utah District Launches Interactive School Lunch App
Schools Seen as Market for West Virginia Farmers
Maryland Elementary School Hosts Hero Lunch
Minneapolis Schools and Chefs Team Up to Promote Nutrition

Reports, Webinars, and Events

FRAC Report Released on Food Hardship
USDA Farm to School Census Webinar
School Nutrition Foundation and the Walmart Foundation Host Webinar on Breakfast in the Classroom
Register Now for SNA's Fall Industry Boot Camp – Only Five Spots Remaining!
SNA Monitors Participation in Lunch and Breakfast Programs
USDA Farm to School Program and eXtension Hosting Two Webinars
Submit Proposals for the 7th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference: Powering Up

Upcoming Meetings and Events


Federal Policy

A Call for Advocating Your Healthy School Lunch Photos in “Fed Up” Youth Campaign

DoSomething.org, a youth advocacy website with two million members, has launched a campaign encouraging young people to photograph their school lunch. The Fed Up school lunch campaign (www.dosomething.org/fedup), asks participants to “show us what you think of school lunch” by posting photos of their meal, completing a short survey on their impressions of school lunch, and voting either “eat it” or “toss it” on posted photos. SNA sent this letter to DoSomething.org on behalf of members and is communicating with DoSomething.org regarding campaign inaccuracies. SNA encourages members to help show DoSomething.org the true state of school meals.

Visit this link and submit a photo of your school lunch so visitors to the site can see the healthy, fresh, delicious food you serve in your schools each day. It only takes a few minutes to participate. Click on the “Show us your lunch” tab at the bottom of the page. Then click on “register” in the top right corner. You will be required to provide your name, an email address and birthday (you are not required to submit a cell number). Upload your photo and you can complete the short multiple choice survey telling the site how healthy your lunch is!

Apply for the HealthierUS School Challenge Today

Highlight the efforts your staff and school community are making to ensure that students will be eating nutritious meals and engaging in nutrition education, physical education, and physical activity this school year. Download the HealthierUS School Challenge Criteria Application at teamnutrition.usda.gov/HealthierUS/application.html. If you have any questions, you can always contact your State Child Nutrition Agency for more information.

SNA and the Alliance for a Healthier Generation Breakfast Materials Still Available

In collaboration with the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, SNA’s Nutrition Committee created materials with examples of breakfast menus that meet the new meal pattern standards for school breakfast. SNA and the Alliance for a Healthier Generation released this guide at the Association’s Annual National Conference (ANC) in Kansas City. To access this resource, click here.

2015 Dietary Guidelines Process is in Full Swing

The Departments of Health and Human Services and Agriculture have announced the establishment of the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (DGAC). This process happens every 5 years. The DGAC is expected to convene five public meetings; the first meeting was held on June 13-14, 2013. The Committee’s recommendations and rationale will be presented in a report to both the Secretaries of Health and Human Services and Agriculture, and will serve as a basis for the eighth edition of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. This serves as a policy document for which all dietary guidance for Americans is based upon.

SNA will be drafting comments to be included in the record, as well as submitting comments for consideration for oral testimony. SNA is monitoring the process closely and has registered to provide oral comments at the October 3 meeting. You are encouraged to submit comments, as well. To view archived webinars from public meetings, submit comments, and see the full calendar of events, click here.

Competitive Foods Update: Interim Final Rule Published

USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) has published an interim final rule for Competitive Foods entitled, National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program: Nutrition Standards for All Foods Sold in School. SNA is in the process of reviewing and analyzing the rule, as well as determining next steps in response to the rule. This interim final rule amends the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program regulations to establish nutrition standards for all foods sold in schools. There is a 120-day comment period for the interim final rule and written comments on the rule are accepted at Regulations.gov until October 28, 2013. SNA has reconvened the Competitive Task Force in order to develop an official association position. These comments are being reviewed and will be shared upon board approval.

See www.schoolnutrition.org/competitivefoods for the Interim Final Rule, SNA’s Press Release, and a list of a number of news articles on the topic quoting then SNA President Sandra Ford, SNS. Other resources include the OFW Memo on the Interim Final Rule and a side-by-side comparison (in Excel) of SNA’s recommendations (view comments) and the Interim Final Rule.


State Policy

Vermont Schools Publish Cookbook

Schools in Vermont will soon be receiving a free cookbook of school-tested, kid-approved meals. “New School Cuisine: Nutritious and Seasonal Recipes for School Cooks by School Cooks,” was developed in partnership by Vermont FEED (Vermont Food Education Every Day), the Vermont Agency of Education, and the School Nutrition Association of Vermont supported in part by funding from federal U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Team Nutrition grants. The cookbook goes to print at the end of this month with copies available mid-October. A copy will be shipped free to every school in Vermont and to every state’s Childhood Nutrition Programs office. It will also be available for free download at the beginning of October. To learn more, visit this link.

Ohio State Senator Helps Serve Breakfast

State Sen. Joe Schiavoni helped serve breakfast last week to students at the William Holmes McGuffey Elementary School students in Youngstown, Ohio. To learn more, visit this link.

Utah District Launches Interactive School Lunch App

The Jordan School District in Utah recently launched a new, interactive lunch menu this year, which gives patrons more information than the traditional PDF lunch menus. Scrolling over a food item will bring up nutrition information, like serving size, calories, carbs, sodium, etc., as well as a photo and description. For those with food allergies, there is the capability to filter the menu and immediately see which items contain that food. To learn more, visit this link.

Schools Seen as Market for West Virginia Farmers

West Virginia Farmers are looking to schools as a major buyer over the next few years due to Farm to School Programs. The state education department has been working to cultivate ties between school districts and farmers. The program is aimed at raising farm income while offering fresh food for students. Sales to schools could be a major windfall for West Virginia agriculture, which yields nearly $500 million in products each year. To learn more, visit this link.

Maryland Elementary School Hosts Hero Lunch

Shady Grove Elementary in Montgomery County, Md., outside of Washington, D.C., held its Annual Hero Lunch on September 13. Every year, the school invites local EMS, firefighters and police to join the students for lunch. To learn more, visit this link.

Minneapolis Schools and Chefs Team Up to Promote Nutrition

Minneapolis Public Schools are working with chefs to develop and promote new menu items. The school district founded the True Food Council, made up of 24 chefs and food bloggers who are providing input and helping the district promote healthier choices for students. For example some participating local restaurants are featuring school menu items on their children’s menus. To learn more, visit this link.


Reports, Webinars, and Events

FRAC Report Released on Food Hardship

A new report released by the Food Research and Action Center (FRAC) found that households have been struggling to purchase adequate food, but households with children suffered extraordinarily high rates of food hardship. In surveys running for five years through 2012, nearly one in four households with children said they couldn’t consistently afford food. Other findings from the FRAC report include:

  • In each region of the nation, more than one in five households with children experienced food hardship, but the rates were above one in four in the Southeast, Southwest and Western regions.
  • The worst 15 states all had a food hardship rate for households with children of at least 26.7 percent (more than one in four), and three states (Mississippi, Washington, D.C., and Alabama) had a rate greater than or equal to 30.0 percent for such households. Nearly half of the states had rates above 25 percent.
  • Of the 100 largest MSAs, 78 had a food hardship rate for households with children greater than or equal to 20 percent. While the conventional wisdom may be that urban poverty and economic hardship are concentrated in the Midwest, the Gallup data show that the Southeast, Southwest and California have MSAs where households were the most likely to experience food hardship.

The full analysis is available on FRAC’s website, www.frac.org.

USDA Farm to School Census Webinar

Join USDA for an update on the Farm to School Census results. How many school districts in the US are operating farm to school programs? How much school food money is being invested locally? USDA will be launching the site on October 1st in celebration of National Farm to School Month and would like to give you an early look at results. The webinar will take place on Thursday, September 26th, at 1:00 pm Eastern.

Audio

  • Call the toll-free number (from your telephone, audio is not available over the computer): (800) 988-0278
  • When prompted, provide the operator with the participant pass code: 2450330#
  • Please plan to connect 5-15 minutes early to ensure you are connected on time, the meeting will begin promptly.
 

Live Meeting

  • Click on (or copy and paste) this link to join the meeting: https://www.livemeeting.com/cc/usda/join?id=D997TN&role=attend
  • You will be prompted to type in your name, email, and organization. Once you hit “continue” you will be joined with the meeting.
  • Please plan to connect 5-15 minutes early to ensure you are connected on time, the meeting will begin promptly at 1:00 pm ET.

School Nutrition Foundation and the Walmart Foundation Host Webinar on Breakfast in the Classroom

The School Nutrition Foundation (SNF), in partnership with the Walmart Foundation, will host a FREE webinar entitled “Sustainable Breakfast in the Classroom Programs Start with Effective Assessments” on October 16th from 2:00-3:15 pm EST (1:00 pm Central, 12:00 pm Mountain, 11:00 am Pacific). Join this webinar to learn about making the most of the assessment process, best practices, and lessons learned from foodservice directors and operators who have successfully integrated breakfast in the classroom (BIC) into their school nutrition programs. Whether you are considering BIC or you are in the process of implementing BIC, this webinar is for you.

Time will be devoted to Q&A, so please come with your questions. For the first time ever, you can also submit your questions early. Just email them to snf@schoolnutrition.org. These questions will be the first to be answered by our panelists. Participation in this webinar is worth 1 SNA CEU. To register, visit https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/307869346.

Register Now for SNA's Fall Industry Boot Camp – Only Five Spots Remaining!

Scheduled to be held on November 6-7, 2013, this two-day intensive educational seminar is a "must attend" for anyone selling in the school foodservice segment. Companies sending more than two attendees will receive a 20% discount on each additional registration after their first two registrations. Boot Camp is a great resource for training new employees! For more information, contact SNA Industry Relations Specialist Jessica Garrett at (301) 686-3073 or jgarrett@schoolnutrition.org. To learn more, visit www.schoolnutrition.org/bootcamp.

SNA Monitors Participation in Lunch and Breakfast Programs

With the many changes occurring in school nutrition programs, SNA has been monitoring data from USDA to understand how national participation in lunch and breakfast programs is changing compared to the previous school year. Based on preliminary data for the 2012-13 school year (September 2012 through May 2013), 30.8 million students participated in the National School Lunch Program on an average day. This is a 3.2% decrease compared to the 2011-12 school year. While average lunch participation has decreased, participation in the School Breakfast Program has increased reaching on average 13.1 million students per day. This is a 2.16% increase compared to the 2012-13 school year. 

To view the National School Lunch Participation Tracking Charts, visit the SNA Resource Center or click here.

USDA Farm to School Program and eXtension Hosting Two Webinars

The USDA Farm to School Program and the eXtension Community of Practice in Community, Local, and Regional Food Systems will host two webinars to explore Cooperative Extension professionals’ role in supporting farm to school programs.

  • Wednesday, September 25, 1:00-2:00 pm (EDT), Emily Jackson of Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project will share outcomes from a tri-state project that examined the roles of Cooperative Extension in farm to school. She will be joined by Teresa Wiemerslage from Iowa State University Extension and Outreach who will share how she is supporting local food procurement, school wellness, and youth engagement in Northeast Iowa.
  • Wednesday, October 9, 1:00-2:00 pm (EDT), Julia Govis from University of Illinois Extension and Morgan Taggart from Ohio State University Extension will discuss the many ways they are supporting farm to school through the development of educational resources and curriculum.

To view the webinars via LiveMeeting, click here. To hear the webinars, dial 1-800-988-0278 and use the passcode 91613#. Both webinars will be recorded and available on the USDA Farm to School website within 1-2 weeks of initial viewing.

Submit Proposals for the 7th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference: Powering Up

The National Farm to Cafeteria Conference will convene more than 1,000 diverse stakeholders from across the farm to cafeteria movement who are working to source local food for institutional cafeterias and foster a culture of food and agricultural literacy across America. The conference will take place April 15-18, 2014, in Austin, Texas. Submit your proposal for a workshop, poster or lightning talk by November 8. For full details and information, you can download the official request for proposals here. For more information, visit farmtocafeteriaconference.org. Registration opens in January 2014.


Upcoming Meetings and Events

September 26-28, 2013, Arizona State Conference, Glendale, AZ
October 11-12, 2013, Maryland State Conference, Ocean City, MD
October 16-20, 2013, SNA Fall Committee Days, Crystal City, VA
October 17-20, 2013, South Carolina State Conference, Myrtle Beach, SC
October 25, 2013, Vermont Annual Meeting, Shelburne, VT
October 29-30, 2013, Massachusetts State Conference, Worcester, MA


 
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