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Last Published: 12/03/2012
  • July 2 2014
    The National Education Association believes that every student deserves a great public school. A high-quality school nutrition program is not an add-on or ancillary service, but is an integral part of that great school. The USDA school meals programs serve well over 30 million students per day, nationwide.  We rely on our partners in the education realm to help us ensure that these programs—not only programs of great magnitude, but also of great public health importance—are implemented appropriately so that children are healthy and ready to learn.  This week’s guest blog from the National...
  • July 1 2014
    The results of healthy incentives pilot released on July, 24, 2013 show that small investments can lead to increased fruit and vegetable consumption among SNAP recipients. 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 the USDA’s rich science and research portfolio. Achieving a good diet requires access to nutritious food, but it also requires good choices from among the many thousands of products available at grocery stores and other food retailers – a real challenge for consumers. How can we shape a store...
  • July 1 2014
    Go red, white and blue, all the way to dessert! Happy Birthday America! It’s the Fourth of July and time to celebrate American life. What do you have planned? A family reunion at the beach? A backyard barbeque with family and friends? A picnic in the park? Or a few friends on your patio? Here are some quick and easy tips to make your family’s Fourth of July meals and snacks healthy and delicious! Get creative and let MyPlate be your guide. PROTEIN FOODS Go lean. Choose skinless chicken breasts and lean cuts of beef like sirloin or ground beef that’s at least 90% lean. Try a turkey burger,...
  • June 26 2014
    Each year, as required by the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008, USDA issues the payment accuracy rate for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) nationally and state by state. I’m happy to announce that the fiscal year (FY) 2013 SNAP payment accuracy rate is an impressive 96.8 percent.  This is an all-time high, and is the seventh year in a row with record-breaking accuracy rates.   Payment accuracy means providing the correct amount of SNAP benefits to eligible households. The aim is to make sure that no one gets too little or too much in benefits, but gets exactly the amount they...
  • June 18 2014
    Second Harvest holds ribbon cutting ceremony for a new 65,000 square-foot regional distribution center in Thomasville, Georgia. Across the country, food banks are committed to providing healthy food for those in need. Food banks also have a vested interest in building stronger local economies and creating additional opportunities for the communities they serve. There are currently more than 200 food banks in the country, with more than 63,000 affiliated agencies like (food pantries and shelters). This network distributes more than 2.5 billion pounds of food to needy Americans each year....
  • June 11 2014
    Bill Smittcamp (center), pictured here with his son, Blake, and grandson is president of Wawona Frozen Foods. “USDA has always been very supportive and open to working with small business and the fruit and vegetable industry as a whole,” said Smittcamp, “They listen to our concerns and work with us. The ability to have a conversation with an organization like USDA gives us confidence in our ability to grow our business.” USDA’s purchase programs were created to support our nation’s farmers through the purchase of domestic products and to increase Americans’ access to nutritious food.  Many...
  • June 11 2014
    Unplug is a public service campaign of the U.S. Forest Service and the Ad Council. Summer is fast approaching but packing up the kids to head outside could be daunting, especially for those whose experience with outdoor activities is limited. But don’t worry. With a little help and some simple planning, the whole crew will want to unplug and find activities that will invigorate not just the body, but the mind. The opportunities to show our kids how to eat healthy and be active can stay with them for a life time. Young children and the young at heart will enjoy summer days filled with picnics...
  • June 11 2014
    Thanks to the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010, students across America are being served meals with more fruits, vegetables, whole-grains, lean protein and low-fat dairy.  Parents can send their kids to school knowing that the healthy habits they teach at home are being reinforced at school, with breakfast and lunch menus that provide more of the foods we should eat, and less of the foods that we should avoid. Parents, teachers, school nutrition professionals, communities, and policy makers are working hard to make sure that school environments support a healthier next generation....
  • June 11 2014
    The Healthy Eating Index logo. 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 the USDA’s rich science and research portfolio. Have you ever heard of the Healthy Eating Index? The Healthy Eating Index (HEI) measures the quality of Americans’ food choices. At USDA we use the HEI to see how closely Americans are following the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and MyPlate. The HEI assigns scores to diets on a scale in which the maximum score of 100 indicates that the diet meets all Dietary Guidelines...
  • June 11 2014
    Cross-posted from the White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships blog: With summer’s arrival, officials at the White House and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) are preparing for the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP). This program ensures that low-income children continue to receive nutritious meals when school is not in session. Free meals that meet federal nutrition guidelines are provided to all children 18 years old and under at approved SFSP sites in areas with significant concentrations of low-income children. Our offices recently hosted a nationwide...

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