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Gene Kennedy reportingThe Utah Board of Education has talked about banning junk food in schools, but tonight it ended up sugar-coating the plan.
The state is giving control on this to local school districts. The individual districts will decide if they'll allow sugary snacks. The state voted 8-1 in favor of guidelines. For example, scrap the Mountain Dew and Pepsi and go with milk or water.
The state wants schools to get rid of food with minimal nutritional value, such as candy. Also, no food with trans fats or anything that's more than 300 calories or 35 percent fat content. But again, these are recommendations, not rules.
Kim Burningham, with the Utah Board of Education, said, "And we'll want to see if that freedom for local districts that we believe will work, but it is moving in the right direction to be healthy for kids."
So was it a tough enough decision? Passers-by at the Gateway Mall tonight weighed in.
Larry D. Curtis said, "I'm all in favor of banning junk food. Whatever economic difficulties that creates for the school, we find other ways to overcome that."
Shannon Curtis said, "I think it's a good move to not have junk food in schools."
Lyndsey Proctor said, "I think it's a little over the top. Where does the state have the right to say 'your kid can't eat this?' It's up to the parent, I think."
Schools across this country make millions on junk food in vending machines, but some Utah schools have traded the junk for healthy snacks, and they say they're still making money.