Office of Food and Nutrition Services
Healthy School Environment

In 2010, Congress passed the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act (see 204 of Public Law 111-296).  The Act outlined nutrition standards for all school districts participating in the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program.  The Act also directed U. S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to establish broader guidelines for all foods and beverages available for sale to students during the school day—known as the Interim Final Rule on Nutrition Standards for all Foods Sold in School (Federal Register, Vol. 78, No. 125, June 28, 2013).

The revised state policy titled, Maryland Nutrition Standards for All Foods Sold in School, details criteria for allowable foods and beverages, i.e., nutrient content and portion size, and replace the term, Foods of Minimal Nutritional Value.  The term competitive food will include all food and beverages sold to students on the school campus during the school day, other than those meals reimbursable under programs authorized by the Child Nutrition Program.

Guidelines

Effective July 1, 2014, the Maryland Nutrition Standards for All Foods Sold in School applies to all food and beverages sold to students on the school campus, including cafeteria á la carte items, vending machines, school stores, fundraising activities, and culinary education programs from 12:01 a.m. until thirty minutes after the end of the office school day.

This state policy does not apply to foods sold during non-school hours, weekends, and off-campus events such as concessions during after-school sporting events and school plays or concerts.

This state policy does not apply to food given to students without the exchange of currency/tokens/tickets or food brought to school by the students for their own consumption.

Fundraisers

USDA considers a fundraiser to be an event that includes any activity during which currency/tokens/tickets, etc. are exchanged for the sale/purchase of a product in support of the school or school-related activity.  Giving away food, but suggesting a donation, would be considered a fundraiser since funds may be raised as a result, as well as vending machine profits that are used to support a school-sponsored club or activity such as the school band or football team.

Board of Education Policy 3125 and Superintendent's Rule 3125, School Activity Funds, states fundraising activities should not be held on school time.

Vending Machines

Vending machines not operated by the OFNS outside of the cafeteria may not be accessible to students from of 12:01 a.m. to 30 minutes after the end of the school day

Culinary Education Programs

The state policy has no impact on the culinary education program's curriculum in schools, foods sold to adults, or to students outside of the school day.  The nutrition standards apply to all foods sold to students on the school campus during the school day, including food prepared and/or sold by culinary education programs.

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