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The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Blog
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USDA Partners with DOD to Fight Childhood Obesity

Tue, 10/28/2014 - 1:00pm
Tackling the child obesity epidemic that holds so many health risks for our nation’s youngest members is an important responsibility.  Fortunately, USDA is not alone in this critical charge. Sound nutrition plays an essential role in all aspects of a child’s life, including their ability to learn, grow and thrive in the classroom.  And since [...]

WIC: The Foundation of Healthy Families Since 1974

Mon, 10/27/2014 - 1:00pm
Forty years ago, WIC was established to improve health outcomes for pregnant women, infants and young children.  Today, the program officially known as the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children, continues to be one of the nation’s most successful, cost-effective and important nutrition intervention programs. USDA’s new infographic demonstrates why WIC Works [...]

How USDA Celebrated National School Lunch Week

Fri, 10/24/2014 - 1:00pm
Last week, USDA celebrated National School Lunch Week from October 12 -18 with exciting local events across the country.  It was a chance for USDA staff to meet with students and hear what they think of the newer, fresher options in the lunch room.  It was also an opportunity for USDA officials to say “thank [...]

Organic 101: “Organic” in the Brand Name…Organic in the Package

Thu, 10/23/2014 - 9:00pm
This is the nineteenth installment of the Organic 101 series that explores different aspects of the USDA organic regulations. When consumers see the word “organic” on a product package or label, they have expectations about what is inside the package.  The National Organic Program (NOP), part of USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS), protects the integrity of the organic label by [...]

Happy Birthday! USDA Celebrates WIC Program Anniversary, Accomplishments

Thu, 10/23/2014 - 1:00pm
Birthdays are truly special occasions, celebrating a milestone of achievement. This week, USDA’s Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (better known as WIC) celebrates the program’s 40th anniversary, highlighting four decades of helping improve the lives of millions of infants and children across America. Since the first WIC clinic opened in Pineville, [...]

Farm to School: The Taste of Washington State

Tue, 10/21/2014 - 9:00pm
Students at Conway Elementary School, in Mount Vernon, Wash., learned a few things about carrots last week. First, they don’t start out as “babies” in bags; they grow in the ground and have green tops. And second, as the third grade boys can attest, they’re good for an impromptu sword fight. Bugs Bunny likes them [...]

#AgStrong Innovation in Rural America

Tue, 10/21/2014 - 9:00pm
It takes a lot of hard work to make a living out of farming, to build a thriving agricultural business and it takes ingenuity. This is especially true in rural America, where dedicated farmers and ranchers rely on each other and the communities around them to fuel innovation and create opportunity. From nutritional research to [...]

Schools Have Accepted the New Hampshire Breakfast Challenge

Tue, 10/21/2014 - 1:00pm
The following guest blog is part of our Cafeteria Stories series, highlighting the efforts of hard working school nutrition professionals who are dedicated to making the healthy choice the easy choice at schools across the country.  We thank them for sharing their stories! By Becca Story, Nutrition Specialist for New England Dairy & Food Council More [...]

Whitefish Public Schools Take Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act in Stride

Mon, 10/20/2014 - 1:00pm
The following guest blog is part of our Cafeteria Stories series, highlighting the efforts of hard working school nutrition professionals who are dedicated to making the healthy choice the easy choice at schools across the country.  We thank them for sharing their stories! Whitefish Public Schools Food Service Director Jay Stagg started transitioning to more scratch [...]

USDA Seeks Public Feedback on Policies with School Meals Charges

Mon, 10/20/2014 - 1:00pm
Ensuring access to nutritious food for America’s children is a top USDA priority. Our National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and School Breakfast Program (SBP) play vital roles to ensure healthy foods are available to our nation’s schoolchildren.  I have dedicated my career to these programs, and strongly believe in the power of their positive influence [...]

Women are the Past, Present and Future of American Agriculture

Fri, 10/17/2014 - 9:00pm
Cross posted from the White House Rural Council blog: From historic homesteaders to contemporary cattle ranchers, women have been the cornerstone of America’s agriculture heritage. We’ve produced food to feed our families, feed our neighbors and to feed the world. The 2012 Census of Agriculture notes that nearly one million women are working America’s lands. [...]

Farm to School: We Are Here to Help!

Fri, 10/17/2014 - 1:00pm
Since the official start of the USDA Farm to School Program, we’ve focused on making sure schools have the tools they need to bring local products into the lunchroom and teach children where their food comes from. As October is National Farm to School Month, it seems an opportune time to take stock of the [...]

Farm-to-School and School Nutrition Programs: Dedicated to Serving Healthy Fresh Food

Thu, 10/16/2014 - 1:00pm
The following guest blog is part of our Cafeteria Stories series, highlighting the efforts of hard working school nutrition professionals who are dedicated to making the healthy choice the easy choice at schools across the country.  We thank them for sharing their stories! By Nancy R. Mears, Supervisor of School Nutrition, Delaware Farm to School (F2S) [...]

Federal Employees Help to Knock Out Hunger

Wed, 10/15/2014 - 9:00pm
When I became National Program Manager for the 2014 Feds Feeds Families campaign—the sixth annual, nationwide food drive of Federal employees—I challenged Federal employees nationwide to help knock out hunger by supporting this year’s initiative.  I had every confidence that our Nation’s civil servants would step up in a huge way.  Feds have a tradition [...]

Variety and Consistency are the Pillars to CentroNia’s “Eat Healthy, Live Healthy” Program

Wed, 10/15/2014 - 9:00pm
The following guest blog is part of our Cafeteria Stories series, highlighting the efforts of hard working school nutrition professionals who are dedicated to making the healthy choice the easy choice at schools across the country. We thank them for sharing their stories! By Bea Zuluaga, Food and Nutrition Director, CentroNía/DC Bilingual Public Charter School, Washington, [...]

National School Lunch Week Offers a Time to Celebrate Children’s Health

Wed, 10/15/2014 - 9:00pm
On Friday, President Obama recognized October 12-18 as National School Lunch Week with an official proclamation.  The message thanks hardworking school food service professionals, the tireless staff who demonstrate a daily commitment to providing schoolchildren with proper nutrition to enrich their lives in the classroom and beyond. Since President Harry Truman signed the National School [...]

Bringing You Food and Fiber to Fit Your Active Lifestyle

Wed, 10/15/2014 - 1:00pm
If you’ve learned how to cut a mango from a magazine article, read about new fabrics on a website or heard about nutrition research on almonds from a health reporter on TV, chances are one of America’s ag promotion groups made that information possible and available. From the clothes you wear to the food you [...]

Commemorating the History of SNAP: Looking Back at the Food Stamp Act of 1964

Wed, 10/15/2014 - 1:00pm
On August 31, 1964, President Johnson signed the Food Stamp Act of 1964 as a centerpiece of his War on Poverty, which introduced numerous programs designed to improve the American quality of life for those struggling to make ends meet.  Due to the Food Stamp Act of 1964, the Food Stamp Program, now the Supplemental [...]

Empowering Students to Make the Healthy Choice the Right Choice

Tue, 10/14/2014 - 9:00pm
The following guest blog is part of our Cafeteria Stories series, highlighting the efforts of hard working school nutrition professionals who are dedicated to making the healthy choice the easy choice at schools across the country.  We thank them for sharing their stories! By Victoria Wittrock, Food Service Supervisor, West Central School District, South Dakota I’ve [...]

USDA Committee Gives Produce Industry a Powerful Voice

Fri, 10/10/2014 - 9:00pm
The fall harvest is upon us, and people all over the world are enjoying the abundance of quality fruits, vegetables and other specialty crops.  The specialty crop industry is important to USDA and plays a crucial role in the country’s economy, generating $65 billion in sales and creating more than 900,000 jobs. We recently met [...]

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