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STIVERS AND FUDGE THANK USDA FOR MAKING SCHOOL LUNCH RULES MORE FLEXIBLE

STIVERS AND FUDGE THANK USDA FOR MAKING SCHOOL LUNCH RULES MORE FLEXIBLE

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Steve Stivers (R – OH) and Congresswoman Marcia Fudge (D – OH) today thanked the USDA for implementing their school nutrition legislation through a new rule. Stivers and Fudge introduced the School Nutrition Flexibility Act, a bipartisan bill that gives local school administrators more flexibility to better support children and provide nutritious school meals.

“We cannot expect to properly educate our children if they are hungry at school,” Stivers said. “Our children are our future. As the father of two young children, I believe we must acknowledge that students of varying ages have different food portion needs. I was glad to see the USDA implement this common-sense reform through the rule process.”

“Simple but meaningful steps can go a long way toward giving our children access to a healthier diet,” said Congresswoman Fudge. “I am pleased the USDA has permanently eliminated the protein and grain limits on school meals. Those strict requirements made it difficult for entrusted school meal providers to supply the nutritious foods our children want and need. School officials should have the authority and flexibility to provide adequate portions of food to their students.”

Stivers and Fudge introduced the bill to address issues with the final rule for the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010, which placed new restrictions on school meals. Included in the USDA’s final rule was a strict, unsuitable protein and grain limit that, for example, holds school meals for eighth graders and kindergarteners to the same standard.

The School Nutrition Flexibility Act is endorsed by the School Nutrition Association and has attracted bipartisan support from Members of Congress representing urban, suburban, and rural communities from across the country. On March 6, 2013, Senators John Hoeven (R-N.D.) and Mark Pryor (D-Ark.) introduced a companion bill in the U.S. Senate, the Sensible School Lunch Act (S. 427).

For more information on the new rule, please visit: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-01-03/pdf/2013-31433.pdf

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