Congresswoman Roybal-Allard Discusses Nutrition Standards in the FY15 Agriculture Appropriations Bill
I rise in opposition to provisions in this bill that will undermine the nutrition standards for school meals and the WIC program.
Nutrition programs that support balanced diets are vital tools in protecting against childhood hunger and reducing obesity.
While I appreciate Chairman Aderholt’s efforts to fully fund childhood nutrition programs, I strongly oppose this bill because it weakens federal child nutrition standards.
Rather than allowing USDA to work with schools to help them meet healthier nutrition criteria, this bill weakens the national school meal program by allowing a blanket waiver to any school that says it can’t meet the new standards.
The bill also adds white potatoes to the WIC food package, ignoring research that white potatoes are already consumed above recommended levels and should not compete with other fruits and vegetables for limited WIC vouchers.
Mr Speaker, we have an obesity crisis in our country, and our nation’s children and families are best served when federal nutrition standards are guided by science.
Now is not the time to lower the benchmarks that protect our children’s future health.
I urge my colleagues to vote for amendments that would remove these damaging riders to the bill.