House Dems slam Perdue’s rollback of healthy school meal standards

House Dems slam Perdue’s rollback of healthy school meal standards
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House Democrats slammed the administration Monday for walking back healthy school meal standards promoted by former first lady Michelle ObamaMichelle ObamaHungry for shame — who’s trashing America’s school lunch? Make national service a priority Trump gets royal welcome during 'tremendous' Saudi Arabia visit MORE

Democratic Reps. Jim McGovern (Mass.), Rosa DeLauro (Conn.) and Chellie Pingree (Maine) called Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue’s first actions as head of the Department of Agriculture “disappointing.”

“Just days into his new job as Secretary of USDA, Secretary Perdue has decided to put special interests ahead of the health of America’s children,” DeLauro said in a statement. 

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“School meal nutrition standards were enacted, on a bipartisan basis, to bring school meals up to date with the latest nutrition science — ensuring that our children have healthy options on their plates. However, the USDA and President Trump have now decided to roll back much of the progress we have made in the fight against rates of childhood obesity and malnutrition."

Perdue announced an interim final rule on Monday that postpones further sodium reductions for at least three years, allows schools to serve 1 percent flavored milk and gives states the power to exempt schools from having to replace all their grains with whole-grain-rich products 

Perdue claimed the new rule is needed to give schools more flexibility in meeting the strict standards.

Democrats disagree. 

“This isn't about flexibility, it's about making kids less healthy,” McGovern said in a statement. 

“Just because President Trump thinks fast food is a balanced meal doesn’t mean we should lower our standards for our kids.”