On December 13, 2010, President Obama signed into law, the Healthy- Hunger Free Kids Act of 2010 (Public Law 111-296) which requires schools across the nation to adjust menu items being offered to children participating in the National School Lunch Program.

Mercedes ISD has always prided itself in offering a variety of healthy, well balanced meals that exceed the federal nutrition standards, ensuring that students have all the nutrition they need to succeed at school.

All schools must offer milk, fruits and vegetables, proteins and grains, and they must meet strict limits for saturated fat and portion size. Because of Mercedes ISD’s practice of going beyond the federal nutrition standards, many of the new standards have already been in place for years. However, there are a few additional standards that are implemented this year.

Starting fall 2012, school lunches will meet additional standards requiring:

  • Age -appropriate calorie limits
  • Larger servings of vegetables and fruits (students must take at least one serving of produce)
  • Less sodium
  • A wider variety of vegetables, including dark green, and red/orange vegetables and legumes.

Below are the USDA mandated guidelines for vegetables offered for school lunch:

 

 

 

Minimum Requirement for Vegetables

Grades k-5

Grades 6-8

Grades 9-12

¾ cup per day

¾ cup per day

1 cup per day

Vegetable Subgroups

Weekly Requirements

Dark Green

½ c

½ c

½ c

Red/Orange

¾ c

¾ c

1 ¼ c

Bean/Peas (Legumes)

½ c

½ c

½ c

Starchy

½ c

½ c

½ c

Other

½ c

½ c

¾ c

Additional Vegetables to Reach Total

1 c

1 c

1 ½ c

 

Food and beverages sold or served at school meet the nutrition recommendations of the U.S. Dietary Guidelines and are served by qualified child nutrition professionals.

We provide students with access to a variety of appealing foods that meet the health and nutrition needs of students.