Comparison of Nutrition Standards and Other Recommended Procurement Practices for Improving Institutional Food Offerings in Los Angeles County, 2010-2012

Division of Chronic Disease and Injury Prevention, Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, Los Angeles, CA.
Advances in Nutrition (Impact Factor: 4.71). 03/2013; 4(2):191-202. DOI: 10.3945/an.112.003285
Source: PubMed


National, state, and local institutions that procure, distribute, sell, and/or serve food to employees, students, and the public are increasingly capitalizing on existing operational infrastructures to create healthier food environments. Integration of healthy nutrition standards and other recommended practices [e.g., energy (kilocalories) postings at point-of-purchase, portion size restrictions, product placement guidelines, and signage] into new or renewing food service and vending contracts codifies an institution's commitment to increasing the availability of healthful food options in their food service venues and vending machines. These procurement requirements, in turn, have the potential to positively influence consumers' food-purchasing behaviors. Although these strategies are becoming increasingly popular, much remains unknown about their context, the processes required to implement them effectively, and the factors that facilitate their sustainability, especially in such broad and diverse settings as schools, county government facilities, and cities. To contribute to this gap in information, we reviewed and compared nutrition standards and other best practices implemented recently in a large school district, in a large county government, and across 10 municipalities in Los Angeles County. We report lessons learned from these efforts.

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    • "Through this funding, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health implemented a number of nutrition interventions in the region. These interventions included (a) modifying food services and vending practices at food venues operated by county and city governments (e.g., incorporating healthy nutrition standards through the contracting process with food vendors or suppliers) [8]; (b) converting corner stores or other stores in low-income neighborhoods to food outlets which offer more fresh fruits and vegetables; and (c) utilizing outreach and health marketing to educate the public about the adverse effects of excess sugary drink consumption (Table 2) [9]. "
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