Washington: School lunches have now been made healthier as the senate passed a bill on child nutrition here on Thursday. First lady Michelle Obama wants to put a permanent end to child obesity by introducing such a bill. The prime intention of such legislation is to improve the health conditions amongst the children and expand the number of low income children eligible for free or reduced cost meals. This $4.5 billion legislation would set new standards of food in schools as well as vending machines.
This legislation which had to be passed earlier this year in March had been postponed before Thursday when it was finally approved with the important involvement of White House. President barrack Obama ensured the Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla that the legislation had been paid for and there will be no cost issues on the same. For the Arkansas democrat, Senate Agriculture Chairwoman Blanche Lincoln, this bill has been of great priority being in a tough re-election this year.
First lady Michelle Obama stated this legislation as the first ever effort made to improve the nutritional conditions of the children across America. The new standards set for vending machines and school food items do not tend to remove popular items like pizza out of the cafeteria completely but just improve its quality in terms of amount of nutritional content. For example, the pizzas will now be served on a healthy whole wheat crust with low fat mozzarella. Similarly, the vending machines would supply less candy and fewer high calorie sodas for school drink holders.
Many national food and beverage companies have joined hands with public health advocates to create interest in this issue in nutrition. This has made it far more difficult for the junk food companies to enter into the school market and increase the amount of sugary drinks infesting our cup holders.
Legislation was moved forward this week after a deal wherein it was finally decided that $2.2 billion of the future funding would go to food stamp programs. Hunger advocates are in opposition to this bill now. The president of food research and action center, Jim Weill also has negative opinions regarding the money going in favor of food stamp benefits.
On the other hand, Lincoln has issues regarding the use of money. Accordingly, the democrats tend to use the money for child nutrition in order to avoid its usage in other fields. She expressed her satisfaction on the fact that although dollars are spent at least they are spend on the noble cause that is nutrition for kids.