Navigation Links
Oregon Farm to School bill would benefit health through job creation, study finds

WASHINGTONA bill in Oregon that would provide incentives to deliver fresh local food to schools would improve the health of the state's residents and, at the same time, create hundreds of new farm-industry jobs over a five- to 10-year period, according to a study released by Upstream Public Health in Portland.

The researchers received a grant from the Health Impact Project, a collaboration of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and The Pew Charitable Trusts, to conduct a health impact assessment (HIA) on the Farm to School and School Garden legislation, HB 2800.

An HIA is a study that explores the health impacts of a proposed project, plan or policy in areas that might not otherwise take full account of the health implicationslike education, land use, agriculture or energyand then makes recommendations to maximize the benefits and minimize any potential risks.

"This report is especially valuable because it shows how health impact assessment can help policy makers find unexpected ways to improve health and, at the same time, provide economic benefitssomething that is more important now than ever given the current fiscal climate," said Aaron Wernham, M.D., director of the Health Impact Project.

Farm to School and School Garden Legislation, Oregon HB 2800 , as introduced

The bill would reimburse schoolsequivalent to 15 cents per lunch and seven cents per breakfastfor purchasing Oregon food products and provide competitive education grants to schools to support teaching gardens and cross-curricular nutrition education activities that could help kids learn about local food production and increase their preference for fruits and vegetables. The funding for the program would come from the Economic Development Fund, which is a portion of Oregon's Lottery Fund.

The researchers conducted interviews with stakeholders, reviewed existing research on the health impacts of Farm to School programs and collaborated with an economist to analyze the bill's impact on employment in the state.

The HIA concluded that HB 2800, if enacted as introduced, would:

  • Create at least 800 new agricultural jobs over the next five to 10 years in both urban and rural areas of the state. Research shows that employment improves health because it helps people afford safe places to live, buy adequate amounts of food, pay for health insurance and cover health care costs.

  • Have the potential to increase students' satisfaction with school meal offerings, which research shows can increase student participation in the federal school meals program. This program provides nutritionally balanced, low-cost or free breakfasts and lunches to children each school day. In 2009, 14 percent of households in the statenearly 500,000 people, including working familieshad to cut back on food or even regularly skip meals because of economic hardships. The legislation could mean more children in these families would get nutritious meals at school. Hunger can affect health by causing chronic illness and developmental delays.

  • Have the potential for a small to moderate, long-term impact on childhood obesity by increasing fruit and vegetable consumption and increasing physical activity because more children are participating in school-based gardens.

"We found that this bill would offer the state of Oregon an economic benefit and, at the same time, provide a number of important health benefitsfor example, shaping children's preferences for healthy food," says Tia Henderson, Ph.D., research coordinator at Upstream Public Health and co-author of the report.

The Upstream Public Health HIA is one of 13 demonstration grants funded by the Health Impact Project. The other HIAs address a range of decisions, including a light rail corridor connecting the Twin Cities in Minnesota and a plan to re-develop an old automobile factory site in Atlanta, which would result in over 6.5 million square feet of office space, hotels, shopping and parking facilities. The project is accepting proposals through June 1, 2011 for its next round of grants.

"This is a fast-growing field, with health impact assessments being conducted all across the country," said Dr. Wernham. "We are witnessing a rapid increase in demandand supportfor this important policy-making tool, including funding at the local, state and national levels."


Contact: Alex Dery Snider
Pew Health Group

Related biology news :

1. Northwest climate change is target of $3.2M in grants to University of Oregon
2. Forest inventories in Oregon include more than trees
3. Oregons Rogue River Basin to face climate-change hurdles
4. Poor in rural Oregon face double binds when getting food
5. Oregon State trains graduate students to be better TAs
6. Log exports down, lumber exports up in Washington and Oregon in 2009
7. Invasive tunicate appears in Oregons coastal waters
8. Modeling study identifies characteristics of high elk-use areas in western Oregon, Washington
9. Color My Pyramid nutrition education program battles obesity in DC schools
10. identiMetrics & BIO-key(R) Provide Biometric Finger Scanning for School Food Service Nationwide
11. NJIT sustainability expert to discuss high performance schools at seminar
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/20/2015)... Connecticut , November 20, 2015 ... authentication company focused on the growing mobile commerce market ... CEO, Gino Pereira , was recently interviewed on ... interview will air on this weekend on Bloomberg ... Latin America . --> NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" ...
(Date:11/19/2015)... Nov. 19, 2015  Based on its in-depth analysis ... recognizes BIO-key with the 2015 Global Frost & Sullivan ... & Sullivan presents this award to the company that ... the needs of the market it serves. The award ... and expands on customer base demands, the overall impact ...
(Date:11/19/2015)... , Nov. 19, 2015  Although some 350 ... is dominated by a few companies, according to Kalorama ... own 51% of the market share of the 6.1 ... The World Market for Molecular Diagnostic s . ... "The market is still controlled by one company and ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/25/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 25, 2015 , ... ... company uBiome, were featured on AngelList early in their initial angel funding process. ... AngelList syndicate for individuals looking to make early stage investments in the microbiome ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... Nov. 24, 2015  Asia-Pacific (APAC) holds the ... (CRO) market. The trend of outsourcing to low-cost ... but higher volume share for the region in ... however, margins in the CRO industry will improve. ... ( ), finds that the market ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... FAR HILLS, N.J. (PRWEB) , ... November 24, 2015 , ... ... University, as the recipient of the 2016 USGA Green Section Award. Presented annually since ... of golf through his or her work with turfgrass. , Clarke, of ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... -- Cepheid (NASDAQ: CPHD ) today announced that ... and invited investors to participate via webcast. ... 1, 2015 at 11.00 a.m. Eastern Time --> ... 1, 2015 at 11.00 a.m. Eastern Time --> ... NY      Tuesday, December 1, 2015 at 11.00 ...
Breaking Biology Technology: