US Department of Agriculture’s proposed rule on Nutrition Standards for All Foods Sold in School was published in the Federal Register on February 8. This official version of the proposed rule can be accessed at http://www.fns.usda.gov/cnd/Governance/regulations.htm in the Rules section or on the Federal Register website.

 This proposed rule is now in a 60-day comment period, and after that, the input will be evaluated and a final rule will be developed. This proposed rule is complex, over 160 pages, and applies specific nutritional standards to all foods sold in schools during the school day. 

 Lunchtime Solutions is currently evaluating this proposed rule, and will have additional comments for our school district customers as more analysis is completed, and more clarifications are made by the USDA. It is important to note that by law these additional standards cannot become effective until at least one full year after the final rule is published.  The earliest these could take effect is the 14-15 school year.

 The Lunchtime Solutions program in our schools has always focused much more on complete meals than the sales of a la carte, and we do not anticipate any major disruptions in the program with the new rule.  As the new rule is finalized, we will give our school districts guidance on how the new rule may affect student satisfaction and the overall program revenues.