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BendtheBar 11-17-2011 04:34 PM

Pizza Sauce is Now A Veggie
Congress to rule pizza sauce is a vegetable - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)


US lawmakers prodded by the frozen food industry have moved to protect schools' ability to count pizza sauce as a vegetable in lunches for students.

In an annual spending bill covering the US Department of Agriculture, which has oversight over subsidised school meals, a joint House-Senate panel voted to prevent the agency from restricting pizza, hot chips, and starchy vegetables.

A Republican summary of the legislation was unveiled on Monday and may be approved this week.

The report cheered the defeat of "overly burdensome and costly regulations" and hailed "greater flexibility for local school districts."

The American Frozen Food Institute industry lobby group hailed the measure, which it said "recognises the significant amounts of potassium, fibre and vitamins A and C provided by tomato paste and ensures that students may continue to enjoy healthy meals such as pizza and pasta."

But Margo Wootan, director of nutrition policy at the Centre for Science in the Public Interest, said the legislation was about protecting pizza makers, not nutrition.

"Pepperoni pizza is not a vegetable," Ms Wootan said.

Ms Wootan said existing rules defined a full serving of vegetables as eight tablespoons, except for a "loophole" that set the amount of tomato paste required at two tablespoons, roughly what goes on a slice.

The USDA had proposed early this year to require eight tablespoons of tomato paste in one vegetable serving and limit school lunches to two servings per week of french fries or other starchy vegetables.

"The Congress basically stepped in to protect industry's ability to continue to sell two of the most unhealthy foods in the school lunch program: pizza and french fries," Ms Wootan said.

bruteforce 11-17-2011 04:39 PM

Honestly, better pizza sauce than corn. I realize their pizza sauce is about as healthy as my shoe leather with sugar sprinkled on it, but if they made decent food, it could go along with it. Really, I just think its time they stop legislating what we can and can't eat.

BendtheBar 11-17-2011 04:49 PM

The way I understand it the schools have X amount of fruits and veggies that must appear on the menu each day. Legislation like this allows them to remove real veggies (if they choose) and replace them with pizza sauce.

Now it can function as a breadstick dip, or as an extra veggie on on.

glwanabe 11-17-2011 05:15 PM

We seriously need to rethink those whom we have elected to govern.

BendtheBar 11-17-2011 05:30 PM

At every opportunity...

5kgLifter 11-17-2011 07:17 PM

8 tablespoons, a full serving of veg; not according to sources on serving sizes, that's way too much for a serving which is between 2-3 tablespoons depending on the veg in question.

Not that it maybe would bother many but it's when portions end up getign distorted and people get 4 servings instead of the 1, multiply that by the 5-9 a day they should be eating and they end up with 20-45 servings in reality...pyramid fail!

Soldier 11-17-2011 07:51 PM

There's a huge reason I don't care about this. I have a baby on the way right now, and I'm not worried about the one meal they eat at school because the rest of the time I am going to give them penty of healthy, nutritious foods. Compared to McDonalds and burger king, a single slice of pizza is extremely nutritious.

I also agree that legistating this stuff too much is silly. If parents can't take on this issue at the local level, then why should the federal government worry about it? Untill parents step up and actually start caring about their kids the way they should, it's useless for everyone else to try to fill that role in our kids lives.

bruteforce 11-17-2011 09:38 PM

I'm more worried that the sugar content on a serving of their pizza sauce is probably close to half a can of coke.

angie828 11-22-2011 06:30 PM

This is just crazy. I do not agree with it at all. There is no way 2 tablespoons of the sauce should be considered a serving. That is unrealistic.

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