What are Smart Snacks?
Last summer, the USDA published practical, science-based nutrition standards for all foods and beverages sold to students during the school day (outside the school meal programs). These nutrition standards are called Smart Snacks in School. Smart Snacks will put all food and beverages sold to students across campus on a level playing field. The standards will make healthier foods and beverages
available to students while limiting junk food.
Why are Smart Snacks Important?
Healthy, well-nourished students are better learners! Students who consume healthier foods and beverages are more likely to get the nutrients they need to learn, play, and grow. By providing healthier foods and beverages outside of the cafeteria, we can build on the great strides being made inside the cafeteria!
What do I need to know?
- Smart Snacks will apply to all foods and beverages sold and served to students K-8 and sold to students 9-12* outside of the school meals programs – including vending machines, a la carte, school stores, snack carts and in-school fundraising.
- Smart Snacks will be in effect the entire school day (midnight before to 30 minutes after the end of the school day) across the whole school campus.
- Some fundraising will be affected! Food and beverages sold to students as fundraisers during the school day will have to meet Smart Snacks guidelines (some states have opted to allow for exemptions to this rule, however, the State of Arizona has not).
standards are not limited in any way!
o Non-food fundraisers or fundraisers that include only foods and beverages that meet the
- Smart Snacks does not apply to classroom celebrations and during evening, weekend or community events.
What will the changes look like?
Cookies, candy, chips, donuts, and soda will be replaced with items like popcorn, baked chips, fruit cups and plain water. As parents, teachers and students get adjusted to these changes we hope to see a shift to non-food based rewards and fundraisers overall.
Please feel free to contact Nona Bennett, MS, RD in the Food & Nutrition Department at 623-445-5165 or firstname.lastname@example.org
*The Arizona Nutrition Standards (ANS) have amended the National Smart Snacks standards to include a differentiation between "sold" for grades 9-12 and "sold and served" for grade K-8. This means that foods that are both sold and served in K-8 must meet the Smart Snacks standards. If a school is providing snacks to students in a school sponsored event (i.e. field day, team parties etc.) the food provided must meet the Smart Snacks standards.