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Meeting Total Fat Requirements for School Lunches: Influences of School Policies and Characteristics

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Author Info

  • Newman, Constance
  • Guthrie, Joanne F.
  • Mancino, Lisa
  • Ralston, Katherine L.
  • Musiker, Melissa

Abstract

Concerns about child obesity have raised questions about the quality of meals served in the National School Lunch Program. Local, State, and Federal policymakers responded to these concerns beginning in the mid-1990s by instituting a range of policies and standards to improve the quality of U.S. Department of Agriculture-subsidized meals. Schools have been successful in meeting USDA nutrient standards except those for total fat and saturated fat. This report uses school-level data from the School Nutrition Dietary Assessment-III to calculate statistical differences between the fat content of NSLP lunches served by schools with different policies (e.g., menu planning) and characteristics like region and size. Positive associations are found between a meal’s fat content and the presence of a la carte foods and vending machines, which are thought to indirectly affect the nutrient content of USDA-subsidized meals.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service in its series Economic Research Report with number 55957.

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Date of creation: Nov 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ags:uersrr:55957

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Related research

Keywords: National School Lunch Program (NSLP); obesity; nutrition; Agricultural and Food Policy; Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety; Health Economics and Policy; Institutional and Behavioral Economics;

This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

References

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  1. Daniel Finkelstein & Elaine Hill & Robert C. Whitaker, 2007. "School Food Environments and Policies in U.S. Public Schools," Mathematica Policy Research Reports 5781, Mathematica Policy Research.
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Cited by:
  1. Mancino, Lisa & Todd, Jessica E. & Guthrie, Joanne F. & Lin, Biing-Hwan, 2010. "How Food Away From Home Affects Children's Diet Quality," Economic Research Report 134700, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
  2. Papoutsi, Georgia & Drichoutis, Andreas & Nayga, Rodolfo, 2011. "The causes of childhood obesity: A survey," MPRA Paper 30992, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. Lin, Biing-Hwan & Guthrie, Joanne F., 2012. "Nutritional Quality of Food Prepared at Home and Away From Home, 1977-2008," Economic Information Bulletin 142361, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.

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