Alice Waters had some eloquent and important things to say when the House Appropriations Committee voted to undermine the 2010 Child Nutrition Reauthorization (CNR) (a.k.a the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act) when we reported a few weeks back. Waters describes schools as places where edible education should be required and carried out via healthy lunches, cafeterias and classrooms: altogether the starting point of how we can really begin to change the food system. She writes:
"The costs associated with not investing in real food are too great, and we need to acknowledge honestly the far-reaching consequences that the current program has had in every area of American life. By allowing fast-food culture into the cafeteria, we have effectively endorsed that industry’s values, helped facilitate the obesity epidemic, widened the achievement gap and aided an addiction to junk.”
The rest of her article (below) is a must-read. As a testament to the importance of Waters’s feelings, the USDA’s recently revamped Farm-to-School (FtS) census shows the undeniable success of these types of programs in school. The National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) provides a great synopsis, pointing out that FtS programs directly build local economies and work to educate students on food issues inside and outside of the classroom.
NSAC is a powerful ally of CNR and they are currently working with groups such as the National Farm to School Network, the Food Research Action Center, Feeding America, and the Center for Science in the Public Interest to help guide policies and priorities for the upcoming 2015 CNR. We’re staying tuned into this one, folks! As Alice Waters says:
We need to have the courage and conviction to establish a nutritious, sustainable, free school-lunch program for all.
PHOTO: Alice Waters by Andy Delcambre, Creative Commons
- Alice Waters: The Fate of Our Nation Rests on School Lunches via TIME
- New Farm To School Census Shows Steady Growth via National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition