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Food and Nutrition

Students Helping to Shape School Lunches

What’s new with school lunch this year? In several school districts across the nation, this question is being answered by students themselves. Collaborations between school staff and students have resulted in school cafeterias that provide a welcoming environment for eating together, while offering healthy, appealing choices for their students. With the help of Team Nutrition Training Grant funds, many states have created these changes and developed ways to include kids in menu planning, taste tests, cafeteria makeovers and more.

Nutrition.gov Brings You More Nutrition Resources in Spanish

In recognition of National Hispanic Heritage Month, Nutrition.gov announces its enhanced “En Español” website, making it easier to navigate and find credible nutrition resources in Spanish. Forty web pages were translated into Spanish. Now Spanish-speaking users and nutrition professionals in need of Spanish resources can browse a wide array of translated information on nutrition topics such as infant and toddler nutrition and nutrition as it relates to diabetes, heart health and obesity.

USDA Agencies Worked Together to Provide Summer Meals to Rural Communities

Food is an important thing that everyone thinks about. For those who are fortunate, when they’re hungry, food is easily available to them. Unfortunately, millions of students during the summer don’t have the privilege of knowing where their next meal is coming from because they no longer receive the meals they relied on throughout the school year. Without proper nutrition year round, it can be difficult for kids to learn, grow, and thrive.

Back to Basics: All About MyPlate Food Groups

Do you remember learning about the food groups in school? You may have been taught using the Food Wheel, Food Guide Pyramid or MyPyramid depending on your age. Kids today learn about the food groups from MyPlate. Now that the back-to-school season is settling down, the nutritionists at MyPlate are offering a back-to-basics refresher lesson on the food groups.

Staying Up-beet in Minnesota!

Secretary Perdue has proclaimed September “National Food Safety Education Month (PDF, 346 KB)“. To celebrate, USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service is developing innovative food safety trainings for school nutrition professionals and honoring training graduates like Barbara Griffiths MSBA, RD, SNS, who make safe and nutritious foods a priority in their programs.  As a graduate of USDA’s Produce Safety University, Griffiths has learned to source local fruits and vegetables from growers within her community and turn them into innovative menu items!

Back to School: School Meals Play Vital Nutrition Role for Kids

With millions of children now eating both breakfast and lunch at school, school meals play a crucial role in providing the nutrition foundation children need to succeed in the classroom.  For some, the food they get at school may be all they have to eat in the course of a day.  It’s an important fact to consider – particularly now, as kids across the country head back to school.

By the Numbers: Spotlight on Farmers Market Week

August 6-12 is National Farmers Market Week, and the sunny days of summer make it a perfect time to drop by one of the more than 8,500 farmers markets across the country and load up for a picnic! While you put together your picnic shopping list, keep in mind that growers selling locally not only help increase access to fresh food, but they also create 13 full-time jobs for every $1 million in revenue earned.

USDA Celebrates World Breastfeeding Week, Awards Programs That Support WIC Moms

USDA’s Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children, popularly known as WIC, is once again celebrating World Breastfeeding Week, August 1-7. This year’s theme is Sustaining Breastfeeding Together, emphasizing the importance of family and community support for breastfeeding women.

Check the Label and Bring it to the Table – USDA Grade Labels Explained

Summer heat, sizzling grills, and a night sky filled with fireworks - here comes Fourth of July! I really love this time of year. It’s another opportunity to grill up a feast to share with my family and friends. It is also a great time to share my knowledge about the USDA grade shields!

Celebrate National Dairy Month with Yogurt 5 Ways

June is an exciting month filled with picnics, cookouts, and outdoor time. Along with sun and fun, June also brings us National Dairy Month. Most Americans do not meet recommendations for the dairy food group, which includes milk and many of the foods made from milk, such as yogurt and cheese. Calcium-fortified soymilk (soy beverage) is also part of the dairy food group, as well as lactose-free and lower-lactose milk products. When choosing foods from this group, choose fat-free or low-fat options.