Raw Data

School Lunch meat has lower standards than fast food

Jack in the Box and other big retailers set for certain bacteria in their burgers are up to 10 times more stringent than what the USDA sets for school beef.

USDA meat is donated to almost every school district in the country and served to 31 million students a day. President Obama noted earlier this year that, for many children, school lunches are “their most nutritious meal sometimes their only meal of the day.”

Congress will revisit the Child Nutrition Act, which governs the lunch program, next year.

“If there are higher quality and safety standards, the government should set them,” says Rep. George Miller chairman of the House Committee on Education and Labor. “Ensuring the safety of food in schools is something we’ll look at closely.

Officials with the Agricultural Marketing Service , the USDA agency that buys meat for the school lunch program, insist that schools get top-notch products

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