Vending Machines in Elementary Schools to Cut Back on Soft Drinks - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

8/17/05

Vending Machines in Elementary Schools to Cut Back on Soft Drinks

With childhood obesity on the rise, The American Beverage Association says it's time to limit sugary soft drinks in schools; that vending machines in elementary schools should be stocked only with water and pure juice, and that kids in middle school should have access to more low-calorie juices.

"This would be just another action we could take that we think is consistent with what parents, school officials and communities want," says Susan Neely the President and CEO of the American Beverage Association.

Sounds impressive, but critics are quick to point out that the guidelines focus mainly on younger grades, where soft drinks are rarely sold anyway. In high school, where the biggest problem is, the new policy suggests machines carry no more than 50 percent soft drinks. Meanwhile, nutritionists argue the problem is bigger than just vending machines. That parents and schools need to work together in steering kids away from junk and toward making healthier choices.

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