Legislation to Ban Sale of ‘Junk Food’ in Public Schools Faces ‘Uphill Battle,’ New York Times Says
Although several states, including California, have proposed legislation to restrict the sale of "junk food" in public schools to address the issue of childhood obesity, "it is an uphill battle given the lobbying might" of the food industry and the financial interests of school districts that "profit from vending machine sales," according to a New York Times editorial. The editorial points out, for example, that a bill (SB 1520) to ban the sale of soda in public schools in California "stumbled" this week in the Senate Education Committee amid opposition from the food industry and the California Teachers Association. In addition, according to the editorial, most schools "do even worse on the other half of the overweight problem -- lack of physical activity." The editorial says that only a small number of schools nationwide provide daily physical education for students, and some have "eliminated it entirely" (New York Times, 5/24). In California, the Senate Education Committee has passed a bill (SB 1868) that would require schools to improve physical education requirements (California Healthline, 5/2). The editorial concludes that most schools have done "little to help burn off the calories that their vending machines tack on" (New York Times, 5/24).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.