242689 Elementary School Participation in Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP)

Monday, October 31, 2011: 1:30 PM

Punam Ohri-Vachaspati, PhD, RD , School of Nutrition and Health Promotion, Arizona State University, Phoenix, AZ
Lindsey Turner, PhD , Institute for Health Research and Policy, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Frank Chaloupka, PhD , Institute for Health Research and Policy, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Background: The 2008 Farm Bill mandated expanded funding for FFVP to cover selected schools in all 50 States. The program makes fruit and vegetable snacks available at no cost to all children in participating schools. Schools are selected by States with priority given to those with highest proportion of children eligible for free or reduced-price meals.

Methods: Data were collected from a nationally representative sample of elementary schools using a mail-back survey for the 2009-10 school year. School administrators provided information on programs and policies related to school food environment.

Results: Twenty one percent of the elementary school principals reported having FFVP in place in their schools during 2009-10. Schools participating in FFVP had a higher proportion of students eligible for free and reduced meals (58% vs. 48%) as well as black or Hispanic students. Schools that participated in the FFVP were almost twice as likely to participate in USDA's Team Nutrition program (53% vs. 28%) and were more than twice as likely to have a Farm to School programs in place (33% vs. 14%) compared to those that did not.

Discussion: The FFVP expansion mandated in the 2008 Farm Bill is being implemented in slightly over 1 in 5 elementary schools in the US. Results from the 2009-10 school year survey of principals indicate that the program is being implemented in high need schools. Schools that participate in FFVP are more likely to participate in other federal programs such as USDA's Team Nutrition and the Farm to School program.

Learning Areas:
Public health or related public policy
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Describe the elementary school characteristics associated with participation in the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program Assess the food environment in various venues at participating schools

Keywords: School-Based Programs, Nutrition

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am analyzing the data and interpreting results.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.