The new U.S. Agriculture Secretary, Sonny Perdue, announced that there would be some changes to the National School Lunch Program. This is a program that offers free and discounted lunch for schoolchildren and was strongly supported by the Obama family.
The program standards that are being undone were put forth by former First Lady, Michele Obama. The rules required students to eat a certain amount of fruit, whole grains, and nonfat milk. His argument is that kids won’t eat the healthy food because they don’t taste as good as unhealthy ones.
Perdue said, “If the kids aren’t eating the food, and it’s ending up in the trash, they aren’t getting any nutrition.”
Before the change, schools were expected to lower sodium amounts in food, among the other changes. The changes are met with mixed reviews, with some students and local school boards thrilled that the rules won’t be as strict and that they will have more freedom to control the food at the local level.
Other students and health officials are furious with the news arguing that the new rules were helping with obesity rates and providing lower income students with healthier options that they may not receive elsewhere.