255424 Development of a School Salad Bar Evaluation

Monday, October 29, 2012

Lori Andersen, MEd, CHES , Department of Global Community Health and Behavioral Sciences, Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, New Orleans, LA
Keelia O'Malley, MPH , Prevention Research Center, Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, New Orleans, LA
Janet Rice, PhD , Department of Biostatics and Bioinformatics, Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, New Orleans, LA
Carolyn C. Johnson, PhD , Community Health Sciences, Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, New Orleans, LA
Around 17% of American children are obese. A contributing factor to obesity is low consumption of fruits and vegetables. Children will likely not meet fruit and vegetable consumption recommendations when access is limited and quality is poor.

The school environment is an important setting where children's dietary choices can be evaluated. Providing changes to the school food environment may increase consumption of fruits and vegetables.

As part of the “Let's Move Salad Bars to School” initiative, schools in Orleans Parish received salad bar structures. Salad bars have had little success in New Orleans; thus, research is needed to identify factors that impact their use.

The purpose of this study was to evaluate the use of salad bars in New Orleans schools to identify factors that contribute to sustained use.

Multiple surveys were developed for school administrators, food service director and workers, and students regarding factors that affect use of the salad bar.

A cafeteria observation and school food environmental audit were also created.

This research will provide the data to make recommendations to school administrators and food service staff. Next steps in this research include data collection and analysis to determine factors that make the salad bars sustainable.

Challenges in development of the study included schools that were on record as receiving salad bars but claimed that they did not, as well as schools that received salad bars but made no attempt to put them in use. Communicating with and recruiting schools was also challenging.

Learning Areas:
Chronic disease management and prevention
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs

Learning Objectives:
Describe steps involved in developing and implementing a school salad bar evaluation. Identify barriers in creating and implementing a school salad bar evaluation.

Keywords: Nutrition, School Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been the study coordinator for a salad bar evaluation during my studies as a doctoral student in public health at Tulane University. I have worked on several school health research projects. My research interests lie in school nutrition and physical activity. I have presented locally and nationally on school health topics. I am certified in health education.
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.