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The Trump administration on Friday announced plans to roll back school lunch standards on vegetables and fruits originally promoted by former first lady Michelle Obama.

The new standards will allow schools more flexibility “because they know their children best,” the Agriculture Department said in press release.

The article goes on to state the following:

“Schools and school districts continue to tell us that there is still too much food waste and that more common-sense flexibility is needed to provide students nutritious and appetizing meals. We listened and now we’re getting to work,” Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said.

Friday is also Michelle Obama’s 56th birthday.

Perdue shared the announcement from the USDA on Twitter Friday afternoon. The press release includes the following:

The school meals proposed rule would continue to ensure children receive wholesome, tasty meals that provide the nutrition they need to grow and thrive, while offering increased flexibilities for local school districts to serve children food they will want to eat, by:

  • Allowing local schools to offer more vegetable varieties, while keeping plenty of veggies in each meal;  
  • Making it easier for schools to offer school lunch entrees for a la carte purchase, thereby reducing food waste;  
  • Providing schools options to customize meal patterns to best serve children in different grades or smaller schools who eat together;   
  • Supporting a more customized school breakfast environment by letting schools adjust fruit servings and making it simpler to offer meats/meat alternates, ultimately encouraging breakfast options outside the cafeteria so students can start their day with a healthy breakfast; and  
  • Shifting to a performance-focused administrative review process that is less burdensome and time consuming, which would increase collaboration with operators to improve program integrity.  

In a second Twitter post, Perdue wrote, “Enjoyed a delicious lunch with second graders at Castle Hills Elementary in San Antonio, TX. 🍗🥦🥔 We had chicken, broccoli, blueberries, mashed potatoes, and of course, Texas ruby red grapefruit.”

Supporters of Michelle Obama have reacted in outrage that the rollback of her school lunch program was announced on her birthday, while others who hated the program are celebrating.

Earlier on Friday, former president Barack Obama wished Michelle a Happy Birthday:

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