The school day is healthier. The Healthy, Hunger Free Kids Act of 2010 required the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to make significant nutrition improvements in school meals, as well as to improve the overall quality of the food sold at school. Specifically, USDA was mandated to update nutrition standards for school lunch, breakfast, and competitive foods. Schools must make sure that water is available free of charge during the meal service. FRAC advocated for these long-overdue improvements and then worked with USDA during the rulemaking process by providing input on the changes.
These new nutrition standards for school meals and competitive foods also have the potential to increase school meal participation. There is a growing body of evidence and local success stories that demonstrate that improving school meal quality and the overall school food environment improves school meal participation.
The Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) is designed to assist limited resource audiences in acquiring the knowledge, skills, attitudes, and changed behavior necessary for nutritionally sounds diets, and to contribute to their personal development and the improvement of the total family diet and nutritional well-being.
Conferences and Events
Capacity Request for Application (RFA) (formerly the Formula Grant Opportunity (FGO)) – Instructions and resources related to the EFNEP RFA, 5-Year Program Plan/Annual Update, Budget Sheet and Budget Justification
WebNEERS (formerly NEERS5)
Impacting Lives, Investing in Futures (Video)
With the U.S. being the world’s leading producer of strawberries, the success of these tart and sweet treats is essential to the economy of a state like Florida. In fact, with a $366 million-per-year industry, the state comes second only to California as the nation’s largest strawberry producer. Naturally, strawberry growers are looking for ways to sustain their harvests and profitability.
Enter Natalia Peres, University of Florida Gulf Coast Research and Education Center professor of plant pathology. With funding from the USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), Peres and her research team developed an online web tool, the Strawberry Advisory System (SAS), which helps farmers spend less money on fungicides yet achieve better results with what they do spray.
“This system is a prime example of something we like to call the ‘The Internet of Agriculture Things.’ It is showing how Internet-enabled technologies can be used to achieve the kind of healthy, cost-effective, high-yield crops we will need to feed the burgeoning global population while ensuring competitiveness of the American farmer,” said Sonny Ramaswamy, NIFA director.
With 96 percent of Florida strawberry producers reporting cases of botrytis, 40 percent with yearly cases of anthracnose, and 30 percent with anthracnose every 3-4 years, fungicides are a necessary – and hefty – bill. However, SAS may be just what Florida’s farmers are looking for.
Under EU legislation in the food and feed areas, EFSA is required to operate under different regulatory frameworks with separate data requirements. Two EFSA Scientific Panels have concluded that the colour Patent Blue V (E 131) is not a safety concern at current use levels whilst ensuring consistency in the consideration of the available scientific information within these fields.
“Energy” drinks report published
EFSA has published a report on a commissioned study that for the first time collates data on the consumption of “energy” drinks at European level for specific population groups, including children and adolescents. The study also estimates consumers’ exposure, through both acute and chronic consumption, to some active ingredients found in “energy” drinks.
Work Plan 2013 published for a busy year ahead
EFSA has a full programme of activities in 2013 reflecting its broad remit to protect consumers, animals and the environment while supporting innovation in the agri-food sector. Demand for scientific advice will remain high this year, with approximately 690 scientific outputs, including key work on bee health and pesticides, bisphenol A and aspartame to name a few.