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The USDA is getting out of control. Rather than protecting rural America, the Department of Agriculture has decided to police day care centers to micromanage what our children eat.
If the U.S. Department of Agriculture has its way, first lady Michelle Obama’s vision for what Americans should be eating will affect more federal programs. The department is seeking to overhaul rules related to the Child and Adult Care Food Program, a program similar to the National School Lunch Program, except for day-care providers.
Day care centers are eligible for reimbursements from the federal government, provided there is compliance with their rules. The USDA wants more vegetables and less sugar served to children and adults in day care centers. “Grain-based desserts, such as cookies and cakes, would no longer be reimbursable, and children younger than 1 would no longer be offered juice,” the Lansing State Journal reports. Facilities that deep fry food on-site could no longer participate in the program. “Prepackaged fried foods,” like chicken nuggets, would be allowable, so long as they are served “infrequently.”
The effect could be sweeping. According to Mlive, at least 30 states “require day cares to use the program’s nutrition guidelines to receive licenses.” The program also feeds about 120,000 elderly or disabled adults each day.
This is far beyond the scope of the USDA, and a clear violation of individual rights. Parents should be the ultimate decider of what their children eat, not the government.