This report found that school districts fail to take advantage of healthier foods offered by the federal child nutrition commodity program, despite improvements in the nutritional quality of foods offered to schools by USDA. The study found that, in California, meat and cheese products accounted for more than 82% of the dollars spent on commodity foods, while only 13% were used to purchase fruits, vegetables, and legumes. Nationally, the study found that more than 50% of commodity foods are sent to processors before they arrive at schools. Processing is completely unregulated as to nutritional quality. As a result, the items most frequently purchased-ground beef, cheese and chicken-are served to children as hamburgers, pizza and chicken nuggets, which are high in calories and saturated fat. School districts need assistance in using the commodity program wisely and fully to assure the highest nutritional meal quality for their students.
Published: September 2008
ID #: 57925
Publisher: California Food Policy Advocates, Samuels & Associates, and Center for Weight and Health
Authors: Hecht K, Sharp M, Beller D, et al
Resource Type: Report
Applied Research Framework: A Guide to Creating Impactful WIC Research Projects and Collaborating with WIC AgenciesThe Applied Research Framework aims to help external researchers (e.g., academic or nonprofit researchers) plan, communicate, execute and disseminate research related to WIC. This framework provides a checklist to guide research projects, including advice for building relationships with WIC agencies, descriptions of publicly available WIC-related datasets, and more! WIC agencies may also use this framework More