Published: September 2014

ID #: 69298

Journal: J Acad Nutr Diet

Authors: Ritchie LD, Sharma S, Gildengorin G, Yoshida S, Braff-Guajardo E, Crawford P

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In 2011, the U.S. Department of Agriculture began requiring that child-care sites participating in the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) make drinking water available throughout the day and serve only low-fat or non-fat milk to children ages 2 years and older. In 2012, the California Healthy Beverages in Child Care law additionally required that all child-care sites in that state eliminate all beverages with added sweetener and limit the offering of 100 percent juice to once daily. This paper evaluates changes in beverages served to children ages 2 to 5 by comparing cross-sectional statewide samples of California child-care sites before (in 2008) and after (in 2012) the California and federal child-care beverage policies were implemented. Researchers found significant improvements in the beverages being served in child-care sites in 2012 compared with 2008. Significantly more sites served water with meals/snacks (47% vs. 28%) and made water available indoors for children to self-serve (77% vs. 69%), and fewer sites served whole milk usually (9% vs. 22%). While 60.2 percent of survey respondents reported being aware of the new beverages polices in 2012, only 23.2 percent of sites were judged fully compliant with the California law.

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