First lady Michelle Obama’s efforts to ensure healthier school lunches took a blow in the $1 trillion government funding measure unveiled by House Republicans on Tuesday.
The spending package includes provisions rolling back required reductions on sodium in school lunches, saying the rule should not be implemented “until the latest scientific research establishes the reduction is beneficial for children.”
The legislation also says states should be allowed to issue waivers to schools that could demonstrate “hardship” in implementing requirements for incorporating whole grains into the meals.
The White House dismissed the provisions in the spending bill.
“In light of the efforts to roll back school nutrition standards, we consider the minor adjustments to the standards a real win for kids and parents,” Sam Kass, the executive director of the first lady’s “Let’s Move!” initiative said in a statement. “The Administration will continue to support districts across the country in every way we can to achieve the goal of providing good nutritious food for students,” added Kass, who is also President Obama’s personal chef and is leaving the White House at the end of the month.