Impact of Nutrition Standards on Competitive Food Quality in Massachusetts Middle and High Schools
In 2012, Massachusetts implemented a competitive food law similar to the fully implemented version of the national Smart Snack standards. The NOURISH study (Nutrition Opportunities to Understand Reforms Involving Student Health) was created to assess the nutritional quality (compliance) and availability of competitive foods and beverages in middle and high schools before and after the law was implemented, and to examine the degree to which compliance would change over time. Researchers used food/beverage data collected via direct observation in 36 Massachusetts school districts and 7 control state districts at baseline (2012), one year (2013), and two years (2014) after the policy. High schools increased snack compliance in 2013 (55.1%) and 2014 (62.2%) compared to baseline (15.3%). Middle schools also increased snack compliance in 2013 (68.1%) compared to baseline (18.6%) but saw a decrease in compliance in 2014 (54.5%). For beverages, both middle schools and high schools in Massachusetts increased compliance in 2013, and then showed further increases in 2014. In control states, competitive food and beverage availability remained stable in middle and high schools throughout the study and alignment with the Massachusetts nutrition standards remained low. By 2014, 60 percent of competitive foods and 79 percent of competitive beverages in NOURISH schools were compliant with the new policy.
In 2012, Massachusetts implemented a state law to establish nutrition standards for competitive foods and beverages sold or provided in public schools, similar to the federal Smart Snacks in School standards. This mixed-methods study aimed to understand food service directors’ (FSD) perspectives and experiences implementing the Massachusetts standards. The study … More
In 2012, the updated U.S. Department of Agriculture school meals standards and a comprehensive competitive food law similar to the fully implemented version of the national Smart Snacks standards went into effect in Massachusetts. This study evaluated the impact of both standards on school food revenues and school lunch participation. … More
During 2012, Massachusetts adopted comprehensive school competitive food and beverage standards that closely align with Institute of Medicine recommendations and Smart Snacks in School national standards. The NOURISH study examined middle and high schools’ compliance with the Massachusetts standards after the first year of implementation. Employing an observational cohort study … More
In accordance with a Massachusetts school nutrition bill (105 CMR 225.000) passed in 2010, the Massachusetts Departments of Public Health and Elementary and Secondary Education have developed new nutrition standards for all competitive foods and beverages served in schools in the state. These standards will be the most comprehensive in … More