SOURCE: School Nutrition Association

July 12, 2005 09:07 ET

Healthy School Meals Take Center Stage at Baltimore Conference

ALEXANDRIA, VA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- July 12, 2005 -- What will be on the menu at more than 95,000 school cafeterias this fall? Healthy school lunches and cold milk -- and you can check them out in Baltimore next week. Over 6,000 participants are expected at the School Nutrition Association's 59th Annual National Conference in Baltimore, Md. from July 17-20, 2005. School nutrition professionals from all 50 states and 14 countries will meet to discuss healthy cooking techniques, food safety efforts, nutrition standards for vended and a la carte foods and beverages, food allergies and more.

Highlights of the four-day conference include:

--  Local School Wellness Policies. Every school district is now required
    by federal law to develop and implement a Local Wellness Policy by the
    start of the 2006-2007 school year. A seminar and several education
    sessions will walk participants through the requirement and highlight best
    practices and sample guidelines.
    
--  Healthy Edge: Building Healthy School Meals. This online course will
    be launched at ANC and satisfies program requirements outlined in USDA's
    School Meals Initiative for Healthy Children. The course covers preparation
    of nutritious and appealing meals that satisfy the dietary needs and food
    preferences of children.
    
--  School Food Safety. The recently launched Food Safe Schools Action
    Guide will be highlighted at the conference and several education sessions
    will address the new federal requirement that schools implement a Hazard
    Analysis and Critical Control Point system.
    
--  Global Child Nutrition Forum. Prior to the conference, the Global
    Child Nutrition Forum (July 14 - 17, 2005) will be held, featuring school
    feeding experts from 14 countries discussing global child nutrition
    programs.
    
The world's largest gathering of school nutrition professionals also includes over 100 accredited educational breakout sessions on food safety and security, managing finances, program regulations, networking, wellness and nutrition, human resources and leadership. Over 400 exhibitors will display innovative new food and beverage items, equipment and technology that contribute to healthy school meal programs. Members of the press are welcome to attend. Contact Erik Peterson for information on scheduling interviews with SNA leaders and for free press registration: 703-739-3900 ext. 124.

SNA, (http://www.schoolnutrition.org) the School Nutrition Association, is a national, non-profit professional organization representing more than 55,000 members who provide high-quality, low-cost meals to students across the country. The Association and its members are dedicated to feeding children safe and nutritious meals. Founded in 1946, SNA is the only association devoted exclusively to protecting and enhancing children's health and well being through school meals and sound nutrition education.

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