This month marks the fifth anniversary of the passage of the federal Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act. The legislation updated nutrition standards for school meals for the first time in 15 years, and introduced the first national nutrition standards for snacks and drinks that are sold in school stores, vending machines, and à la carte cafeteria lines.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture hailed the bill as an opportunity “to make real reforms to the school lunch and breakfast programs by improving the critical nutrition and hunger safety net for millions of children.”
Many American children consume up to half of their daily calories at school, making it essential that, in addition to healthier meals, healthy snacks and drinks also are available. The “Smart Snacks” standards took effect in the fall of 2014 and research shows they are likely to have a positive impact on students and schools.
Healthier school snacks can help students consume fewer calories while augmenting school revenues. Plus, it’s what parents want. This infographic, recently released by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, demonstrates the value of healthy snacks at schools.