[11 December/CNBC]

The US Department of Agriculture has finalised rules that will loosen nutrition guidelines around the composition of school lunches in the United States.  The rules rollback certain provisions of the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act and will allow lunchrooms to serve low-fat flavoured milk as opposed to only non-fat flavoured milks.  The changes will also slow the speed at which schools have to reduce sodium levels in meals and reduce the requirement to only serve grain rich foods (which will make it easier to serve white bread and flour tortillas).  Nutrition advocates say the changes are a step in the wrong direction although they acknowledge that much of the 2010 law remains in place.  They say the changes risk the progress that has been made around healthy eating coming to a screeching halt when the new rules take effect in July 2019.