Saturday, April 20

4 School Districts Receive National Awards for Trailblazing, Innovative Improvements to School Meals

WASHINGTON, March 4, 2024– Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today revealed that 4 school districts in Alaska, Iowa, Maine, and Ohio got awards for their trailblazing and ingenious efforts to enhance the dietary quality of meals for their trainees. This statement was made in front of almost 850 school nutrition experts at the School Nutrition Association Legislative Action Conference throughout National School Breakfast Week.

These school districts are the very first winners of Healthy Meals Incentives Recognition Awards, collectively produced by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Action for Healthy Kids as part of USDA’s Healthy Meals Incentives Initiative, likewise referred to as HMI. These awards commemorate school districts who accept chances to take their school meals to the next level. HMI is among numerous manner ins which the Biden-Harris Administration is supporting schools to offer kids with healthy meals that support their health and wellness.

“For lots of kids, school meals are the healthiest, most healthy meals in their daily lives,” stated Secretary Vilsack. “Investing in ingenious, high quality school meals that trainees delight in is among numerous actions the Biden-Harris Administration is requiring to enhance nutrition for young Americans. At USDA, we are happy to acknowledge the schools that are going above and beyond in offering healthy meals for trainees and assisting them reach their maximum capacity.”

The 4 recipients– Clear Lake Community School District in Iowa; Sandy Valley Local School District in Magnolia, Ohio; Petersburg School District in Alaska; and Regional School Unit 89 in Stacyville, Maine– together with 260 other little and/or rural school districts likewise got HMI grants last summertime to boost the dietary quality of their school meals.

“Action for Healthy Kids wish to praise Clear Lake Community School District, Sandy Valley School District, Petersburg School District, and Regional School Unit 89 on the development they’ve made in their nutrition programs this year,” stated Rob Bisceglie, CEO of Action for Healthy Kids. “We praise the personnel who have actually striven to prepare fresh, enticing and scrumptious meals for their trainees.”

Learn more about the Awardees

Clear Lake Community School District (Iowa) is acknowledged as a “Lunch Trailblazer” for minimizing salt in their menu products through innovative techniques such as sourcing low- or no-sodium items, increasing making use of fresh regional foods, and boosting tastes with customized spice blends. “We’ve been hosting month-to-month trial run for our trainees, which include in your area grown foods,” stated Julie Udelhofen, food service director, Clear Lake Community School District. “These occasions are a fantastic chance to present our trainees to brand-new fruit and vegetables products in addition to program our trainees that their viewpoints matter to us.”

Sandy Valley Local School District (Ohio) is acknowledged as a “Lunch Trailblazer” for effectively decreasing salt in school lunches by obtaining fresh and/or frozen meat and produce and choosing lower salt foods for menu products. Their Student Council and Social Justice groups function as a board of advisers by examining brand-new school menu products and collecting feedback from their peers.

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