FNCS Under Secretary Kevin Concannon looks at the new dish machine bought with ARRA funds at Walker Elementary School in Concord, NH.
Providing our children safe and nutritious meals at school is a key priority for the Obama Administration. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) helped meet this goal through its $100 million investment in local school systems to enhance the nutritional quality of school meals. This funding went towards the purchase of new kitchen equipment for thousands of schools across America participating in the National School Lunch Program . Priority was given to schools that have at least 50 percent of the students eligible for free or reduced-priced meals. Read more »
By Dr. Janey Thornton, USDA Deputy Under Secretary for Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Services
Recently I spent a wonderful day touring California’s Salinas and Pajaro Valleys. My gracious host, Congressman Sam Farr, and I started with the most important meal of the day: breakfast. We visited Rancho Cielo Youth Campus, which has a culinary academy for at-risk youth, where Chef Adrienne Saldivar-Meier—who visited the White House last month as part of the First Lady’s Let’s Move! Campaign—served us egg and sweet potato scrambler on lettuce, a fruit/vegetable muffin, and milk. Chef Adrienne also gave us an engaging nutrition lesson: for example, instead of wrapping our filling with a tortilla, which may have about 110 calories, we can use a lettuce leaf, a food with close to no calories. We all enjoyed a nutritious breakfast that met the USDA standards for the School Breakfast Program while discussing ways to bring more fresh produce into school nutrition programs. Read more »