Thanks to Aggressive Lobbying, Pizza and French Fries Are Classified as Vegetables

 "Do you want some fries with that?" can be be used to help students in school cafeterias "balance out" their meals and make them more "healthy", thanks to the new spending bill that classifies the oily fried potatoes as well as tomato sauce as vegetables.

From the Hill,a report on this amazingly, sadly and quintessentially American spending bill:

The joint House-Senate agriculture spending bill unveiled Monday night blocks stringent school meal standards, following intense lobbying from the pizza and French fry industries.

The bill bars the Department of Agriculture from putting in place tough new standards that are scheduled to go into effect next year. The spending bill would classify tomato paste on pizzas as a vegetable, eliminate limitations which keep potatoes and other starchy vegetables to two servings per week and weaken restrictions on sodium.

Shockingly, those who are concerned with children's health are not thrilled with this move!

"It's a shame that Congress seems more interested in protecting industry than protecting children's health," said Margo Wootan, director of Nutrition Policy at the Center for Science in the Public Interest. "At a time when child nutrition and childhood obesity are national health concerns, Congress should be supporting USDA and school efforts to serve healthier school meals, not undermining them. Together the school lunch riders in the agriculture spending bill will protect industry's ability to keep pizza and French fries on school lunch trays."

 Insert Herman Cain pizza joke here.

AlterNet / By Sarah Seltzer

Posted at November 16, 2011, 5:24am

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