Chambliss: Measure will help improve school meals

A new law that President Obama signed into law on Monday will help “improve the quality of meals served” in schools nationwide, a U.S. senator from Georgia said.

U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., lauded Obama for signing into law the “Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010.” The measure, in part, provides increased funding for schools that meet updated nutritional standards and also allows the USDA to set nutritional standards for food sold during the day in schools.

“The plan includes additional resources to improve the quality of meals served through the National School Lunch Program, as well as addresses the nutrition environment throughout the entire school campus,” Chambliss said in a statement. “Now that this legislation is law, I look forward to giving schools the tools they need to combat both childhood hunger and obesity.”

In signing the measure, Obama said the new law gives “our kids the healthy futures that they deserve.”

“This legislation will help 115,000 children gain access to school meal programs,” Obama said. “And wherever we can, we’re doing away with bureaucracy and red tape, so that families don’t have to fill out mountains of paperwork to get their kids the nutrition they need.

“We’re improving the quality of those meals by reimbursing schools an additional six cents per lunch to help them provide with healthier options – the first real increase, by the way, in over 30 years,” Obama added. “Because when our kids walk into the lunchroom, we want to be sure that they’re getting balanced, nutritious meals that they need to succeed in the classroom.”

Tom Colicchio, a celebrity chef and restaurateur who owns Craft and Craftbar in Atlanta, was among those speaking in support of the measure.

“I am pleased to support President and Mrs. Obama and the efforts of their Administration in securing healthier nutrition for this nation’s children,” Colicchio said in a statement released by the White House. “We still have much work to do to guarantee that all Americans have access to adequate, high-quality food, but the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act is an important first step in that direction.”

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