The House Agriculture Appropriations Committee went forward last week with a bill that would allow schools under economic hardship to request a temporary waiver from complying with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s new school meal regulations. IDFA expects the full House to vote on the bill next week.
The House Agriculture Appropriations bill aims to give states and struggling schools districts an additional year to adjust procurement strategies and meet the regulations the following year. The waiver provision is supported by the School Nutrition Association, but the Administration has launched a nationwide campaign to remove it from the bill.
Taking a different approach, the Senate Appropriations Committee bill would prevent USDA from implementing new and more stringent lower-sodium standards pending further research, and it would allow more options in lieu of whole grains in schools menus.
IDFA supports the options proposed in both bills and continues efforts to make lawmakers aware of the challenges dairy companies face in meeting the USDA school meal regulations, as well as others that are looming.
IDFA urges all members to join voices on Capitol Hill later this month to educate Congress about the dairy industry and let legislators know the industry’s priorities. At Washington Conference, IDFA will share information on school nutrition, food safety regulations, labeling , trade and immigration, among other issues.
“Come to Washington Conference this June to build relationships with your congressmen and improve their understanding of your business and the dairy industry. Explain your biggest concerns to those who represent you and let them know the impact of these decisions,” said Ruth Saunders, IDFA vice president of policy and legislative affairs.
Washington Conference will be held June 25-26 in Washington, D.C. Learn more here.
Members are also invited to attend Regulatory RoundUP, June 24-25, for a discussion with decision-makers and regulatory officials who have direct responsibility for rules that affect dairy plants, products and personnel. Learn more here.
For more information, contact Saunders at firstname.lastname@example.org.