House Republicans Work to Reverse Calorie Limits on School Lunches

USDAgov/CC BY 2.0

Representatives Steve King (R-IA) and Tim Huelskamp (R-KS) are seeking to reverse portions of the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010, which included calories limits on school lunches, according to Food Safety News.

No Hungry Kids Act

The new bill, entitled the No Hungry Kids Act, specifically seeks to abolish new calorie limits on school lunches put in place by the USDA last year: 650 calories for kindergarten through 5th graders, 700 for 7th and 8th graders, and 850 for high school students.

"The goal of the school lunch program was -- and is -- to ensure students receive enough nutrition to be healthy and to learn," said Rep. King. seen on Food Safety News. "The misguided nanny state, as advanced by Michelle Obama's 'Healthy and Hunger Free Kids Act,' was interpreted by Secretary [Tom] Vilsack to be a directive that, because some kids are overweight, he would put every child on a diet. Parents know that their kids deserve all of the healthy and nutritious food they want."

Reelection Battle

It should be noted that Rep. King is currently in a fierce battle for reelection with USDA Secretary Vilsack’s wife, Christie Vilsack.

"If Washington is going to be in the school lunch business, then it should at least ensure that children have full stomachs," said Huelskamp. "Parents who purchase school lunches for their children or taxpayers who support free- and reduced- lunch programs have the expectation that what kids eat are meals -- not mere snacks."

If kids don't have full stomachs on the calorie limits provided then there’s a serious issue. Calorie limits on kids ranging from 650 and 850 calories are right where they should be if not a touch too high. Especially considering that it was this bill, The Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act of 2010, that expanded free and nutritious school breakfast and lunch offerings for kids that were actually hungry by approximately 115,000 students.. It also helps to certify an average additional 4,500 students per year to receive school meals by setting benchmarks for states to reduce childhood hunger. This means that less kids, not more, will go hungry.

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Tags: Education | Kids

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