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‘Five Faces of the Farm Bill’ Series and New Multimedia Channel Bring the Farm Bill to Life

USDA FNS Blog - Mon, 02/02/2015 - 1:00pm
Today, we begin a month-long effort to highlight the one-year anniversary of the Agricultural Act of 2014, also known as the Farm Bill, by launching a new multimedia channel packed with compelling stories, stunning photography and even a personal note from Secretary Vilsack to USDA’s friends, partners and staff; “It is because of you that [...]

Avocados: Helping Draw up the Perfect Recipe for the Big Game

USDA FNS Blog - Wed, 01/28/2015 - 1:00pm
The Super Bowl is next Sunday and people are busy making plans for the big game. For many, the most valuable player will be the avocado, which is quickly becoming a fan favorite. In fact, it’s estimated that Americans will consume 120 million pounds or 240 million fresh avocados during the week leading up to [...]

Summer Sunshine Award Winners!

USDA FNS Blog - Fri, 01/23/2015 - 1:00pm
It may be the middle of winter, but at USDA, we like to celebrate the success of our Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) all year long.  Therefore, the Western Regional Office is thrilled to announce the winners and honorable mentions of the 2014 Summer Sunshine Awards.  A total of eight organizations across the region received [...]

USDA Foods Hatches New Chicken Product for Schools

USDA FNS Blog - Wed, 01/21/2015 - 1:00pm
School lunches have evolved since many of our childhood days to keep pace with new dietary guidelines and school meal patterns, but one food has been an enduring component: chicken.  The popular protein graces the center of the plate in a variety of forms and flavors, and the new USDA Foods unseasoned chicken strip provides [...]

Meet Your Wellness Goals in the New Year with the USDA DRI Calculator for Healthcare Professionals App

USDA FNS Blog - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 9:00pm
This post is part of the Science Tuesday feature series on the USDA blog. Check back each week as we showcase stories and news from USDA’s rich science and research portfolio. The USDA National Agricultural Library’s (NAL) Food and Nutrition Information Center (FNIC) today launched its mobile application, or “app,” which calculates Dietary Reference Intakes [...]

Culinary Boot Camps: Designed to Foster a Healthier Next Generation

USDA FNS Blog - Thu, 01/15/2015 - 1:00pm
The following guest blog is part of our Cafeteria Stories series, highlighting the efforts of hard working school nutrition professionals dedicated to making the healthy choice the easy choice at schools across the country.  We thank them for sharing their stories! To learn more about FNS nutrition assistance efforts, follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/usdanutrition [...]

South Carolina Features Supreme Chicken Sandwich in School Lunch

USDA FNS Blog - Tue, 01/13/2015 - 9:00pm
It’s not surprising that chicken, the most popular meat for kids, is being served in school cafeterias across the nation.  However, in Columbia, S.C., locally sourced chicken has taken center stage on school meal trays in an effort to increase the state’s Farm to School programming. South Carolina’s District Five of Lexington and Richland Counties [...]

USDA… Helping Produce Businesses Meet Consumer and Retailer Demand

USDA FNS Blog - Tue, 01/13/2015 - 9:00pm
Ensuring that its food meets the demands of its retailers and the consumers who eat it is essential to the success of any produce business. This builds consumer trust and helps retailers confidently supply the food we all eat. To help out on this front, the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) offers audits through the [...]

Six Reasons SuperTracker Is the Answer to Conquering New Year’s Resolutions

USDA FNS Blog - Thu, 01/08/2015 - 1:00pm
If you are like millions of Americans, thinking about New Year’s Resolutions makes your hands sweat.  Don’t worry. USDA’s Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion has got you covered. Whether you want to lose weight, get more calcium in your diet, or increase your activity, SuperTracker is here to help. With these six steps, you’ll [...]

New York’s City Harvest Wins U.S. Food Waste Challenge Competition

USDA FNS Blog - Wed, 01/07/2015 - 1:00pm
Beginning in August, food banks across the country competed to see who could sign up the most food donors to the U.S. Food Waste Challenge.  From among the 200 food banks in the Feeding America network, the champion is City Harvest in New York City, which won by signing up 114 donors to the Challenge.  [...]

Initial Launch of the Team Up for School Nutrition Success Training Program

USDA FNS Blog - Mon, 12/22/2014 - 9:00pm
Feeding students healthy, tasty and nutritious school meals can be a challenge.  Just ask any one of the thousands of school nutrition professionals who carry out the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program.  They have to balance menu planning following nutrition standards, financial management, and inventory management, all while making meals that will [...]

USDA Marketing Orders Help Industries Climb to New Heights

USDA FNS Blog - Mon, 12/22/2014 - 1:00pm
Every successful business must have a solid plan to successfully take it from the initial startup phase all the way through its push to expand its operations after the business matures. The same can be said for an industry looking to reach new heights in its lifecycle. A concerted emphasis must be placed on strengthening [...]

Secretary’s Column: 2014, a Year of Action, Partnership and Innovation at USDA

USDA FNS Blog - Mon, 12/22/2014 - 1:00pm
This has been a tremendous year for the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the rural families and communities we serve. Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden recently shared a reflection on her most inspirational moments this year. I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished at USDA over the course of this year, and I thought I’d take a [...]

A Year of Promise for American Agriculture

USDA FNS Blog - Fri, 12/19/2014 - 9:00pm
It’s not hard to list our accomplishments here at USDA: After all, our progress on the much anticipated 2014 Farm Bill has been lauded as “the most successful Farm Bill implementation.” We also launched a website for New Farmers and started a conversation with women in agriculture that will continue to grow for many years [...]

Partnerships Make “Gouda” on USDA’s Commitment to Rural America

USDA FNS Blog - Fri, 12/19/2014 - 1:00pm
’Tis the season for good cheer, holiday festivities and cheese plates.   There are seemingly endless varieties to enjoy – Gouda, Blue, Cheddar, Asiago, Feta, Muenster and many more.  Hardworking American dairy farmers and cheese artisans make these delicious products. A strong dairy sector not only provides us with delicious food for the holiday table, it [...]

Organic 101: Organic Seeds Are Fundamental Right from the Start

USDA FNS Blog - Thu, 12/18/2014 - 9:00pm
This is the twenty-second installment of the Organic 101 series that explores different aspects of the USDA organic regulations. The fall harvest is in, and organic farmers are already looking forward to planting their spring seedlings.  Organic farmers rely on organic seeds to meet the growing demand for certified organic products. These seeds are essential [...]

You’re Never Too Old to Play With Your Food

USDA FNS Blog - Thu, 12/18/2014 - 1:00pm
Who doesn’t want to have a little fun with their food? Especially if you have a picky eater at home, try adding a creative flair to the plate to boost a healthy meal’s fun factor. Our team of nutritionists has been having fun using cookie cutters to come up with creative, healthy ideas, but there [...]

Winter Food Fun for Kids of All Ages

USDA FNS Blog - Tue, 12/16/2014 - 9:00pm
You’re never too old to play with your food! This winter, while the kids are home from school and family and friends gather together, you can experiment with ways to make healthy foods festive and fun. This blog shows how we created a snowy scene using foods from all five of the MyPlate food groups. [...]

Green Thumbs near Green Bay: Menominee Tribe Cultivates Nutrition Education

USDA FNS Blog - Fri, 12/05/2014 - 1:00pm
Cooking knowledge, proper planning, and access to healthy foods are essential ingredients to healthy diets.  I witnessed this firsthand when I traveled to the food distribution center of the Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin, one of the 20 Indian Tribal Organizations that received funding in 2014 from USDA’s Food Distribution Program Nutrition Education (FDPNE) grants.  [...]

Fighting Hunger with Healthy Food: The Perfect Recipe for School Children

USDA FNS Blog - Wed, 12/03/2014 - 1:00pm
This guest blog was submitted by Ellen Parker of Massachusetts’ statewide anti-hunger advocacy organization, Project Bread. As America deals with obesity more than ever, school cafeterias are supporting better nutrition for our kids and echoing public health efforts taking place across the country. USDA is committed to working closely with students, parents, school stakeholders and [...]

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