Public schools in New York have added a new item to their vending machines: carrots.
But if you were eleven years old again and were going to spend a dollar on an after school snack, you probably wouldn’t want to eat carrots. You’d probably choose a Coke or a Snickers bar. These efforts to fight childhood obesity and begin children and adolescents on a healthier course early in life have been backed by legislation. Last year the federal Agriculture Department passed a law to set dietary standards by the end of 2012.
Some complain that the healthier options such as the $3 hummus or the $2 yogurt parfait, are too expensive when compared to the $1 bag of chips or candy bars found in most machines. Still this marks a vast departure from the vending machines of the past. About 6% of the nations vending machines are school vending machines found in high school and middle schools. Another 6% are found in colleges. I would have thought the percentage higher. And with these healthy trends continuing, it may be hard to find vending machines with the junk foods we were used to seeing while growing up.
But if it makes for a healthier nation, so be it.