New school fruit mandate said to be a challenge

Mandate requires students to actually take at least half cup to be reimbursable.

Aug. 15—Students across the nation will see a change in what is being served in their local school cafeterias this year due to new mandates by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Yuma Union High School District student nutrition services director Charlene Story said that the changes have caused cafeterias to revamp the way they do meal planning. Story said that under the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act, schools are now being required to serve larger portions of fruits and vegetables, while putting a maximum limit on the amount of protein and grains that can be served per week.

She explained that while she is in favor of increasing the amount of fruits and vegetables, the USDA is now saying that students have to take at least half a cup for it to be considered a reimbursable meal.