Committee Democrats to USDA: The Pandemic is Not an Excuse to Provide Children Unhealthy Food

December 22, 2020
Press Release
“We must ensure that school meals remain nutritious, particularly through the pandemic and economic downturn, as they may be the only healthy meals children receive each day.”

As originally released by the Committee on Education & Labor

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, led by Committee on Education and Labor Chairman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03), Committee Democrats wrote in opposition to a Department of Agriculture (USDA) proposal to roll back nutrition standards that have significantly improved the nutritional quality of  school meals. The proposal resurrects and expands a 2018 rule that was ultimately vacated by a district court.  

The Members note that under the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act, it is the responsibility of the Department to ensure that the food children are served in school is nutritious and in close alignment with the evidence-based Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGAs). However, the proposed rule fails to align with the DGAs by drastically altering nutrition standards.

Research has shown that approximately half of children’s daily dietary intake comes from school breakfast and lunch and that nutrition plays a key role in the health and academic outcomes of children,” the Members wrote. “We must ensure that school meals remain nutritious, particularly through the pandemic and economic downturn, as they may be the only healthy meals children receive each day.”

To read the full letter, click here.

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