Students May Miss Out on Fresh Fruits and Vegetables
6.29.2012 The Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program, like many other important programs, especially SNAP, is facing serious budget cuts as part of the 2012 Farm Bill negotiations.While CFPA's energy has been focused on protecting SNAP funding, it is important to note that we don't support the proposal to annually cut 1/3 of the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program's (FFVP) funding. This would result in more than a million students being dropped for the program.
SNAP update. link
What does this mean for California?
The FFVP currently benefits more than 179,657 low-income elementary students in the state and more than 3 million students nationwide everyday by increasing fruit and vegetable uptake. If the cuts go through, more than 59,886 low-income Californian students will get dropped from the program.
According to the USDA, the FFVP has been "successful in introducing school children to a variety of produce that they otherwise might not have the opportunity to sample."
Information on FFVP. link
In addition to the potential funding cuts, Representative Reid Ribble (R-WI) is proposing language that will undermine the integrity of the FFVP by allowing canned, frozen, and dried fruits to be served when the original intent of the program was to expose students to "fresh" fruits and vegetables.
What can you do?
You can help protect the funding and integrity of the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program by:
- Calling members of the House Agriculture committee and asking them to protect the program. PDF
- Sending a letter to members of the House Agriculture Committee and encouraging others to do the same. Click on the following for a sample comment letter created by CSPI. link
Don't delay and contact the Committee soon as possible since the Committee is in the final stages of developing the 2012 Farm Bill and is expected to mark-up their bill starting July 11th.