A Message from Your SNA Industry Representative
Happy New Year! May this be your best year ever. To insure that, I would hope you all are in attendance at SNIC in Orlando on January 22 through the 24. Look forward to great speakers and amazing Industry sessions discussing those critical issues we will be dealing with in the coming months. Additionally, the opportunities for networking with colleagues will be abundant.

As we head into 2017, we will be facing the changes that are happening now in Washington D.C. There has been a lot of speculation, but what we know for sure is the topic of Block Grants will continue to be discussed. Do yourself a favor and become knowledgeable about what a Block Grant is, and what history has shown us in terms of the impacts they have on school nutrition programs.

As of today, the Trump administration has not yet made a selection for the position of Secretary of Agriculture. The positions of Under Secretary and Deputy Under Secretary are still vacant as well. My wish is to see friends of Child Nutrition Programs in these positions. SNA has put forth their recommendations, so stay tuned.

This year will be the year of Child Nutrition Reauthorization. It is our collective responsibility to the children of this fine nation to fight for what is best for them—Feeding Bodies, Fueling Minds.

Have a great 2017!


Gary Vonck
SNA Industry Representative

Check out the Sponsorship Brochure!

According to SNA's School Nutrition Operations Report 2016 24% of SNA districts surveyed report having Grab & Go Kiosks in the cafeteria for lunch.


January 22-24, 2017
School Nutrition Industry Conference
Orlando, FL

More Meetings and Events

Upcoming SNA Webinars

SNS Credentialing Exam Dates

Industry Membership
SNA Research

Important Announcements

Updated NSLP & SBP Participation Stats
Want to get the latest participation numbers for the National School Lunch and Breakfast Programs? SNA tracks USDA's national participation data in order to understand school year trends over time. SNA members can click here to get the latest participation information for the 2015-16 school year.

Become a Sponsor of SNA's Legislative Action Conference
Now is the time to contact SNA to increase your visibility at the Legislative Action Conference (LAC) and help build brand familiarity with potential clients. For sponsorship opportunities please see our 2017 Sponsorship Brochure. For more information, please contact SNA Business Development Associate Nicolette Daleske at ndaleske@schoolnutrition.org or SNA Exhibit Sales Manager Crystal Harper-Pierre at charper@schoolnutrition.org.

Celebrate the 2017 School Nutrition Heroes
The 2017 School Nutrition Heroes have been selected! Consider supporting The Celebration as a sponsor or purchase a ticket (or a whole table!) to attend. As SNF’s only fundraising event, The Celebration raises dollars for programs that benefit school nutrition and SNA members. For full event details and ticket information, click here. Contact SNF Director of Development Janet Hedrick at jhedrick@schoolnutrition.org with questions.

Spring 2017 Industry Boot Camp
Don’t miss SNA’s Spring Industry Boot Camp, May 17-18, 2017, in National Harbor, MD. Only two seminars are offered each year and seating is limited. Sessions include an in-depth look at school meal regulations and menu-planning, cafeteria tours, USDA updates and an exclusive, two-hour director panel with the opportunity to ask your own questions! Click here for more information and to register.

School Nutrition…DigiMag-nificent!
Did you know that SNA’s flagship publication, School Nutrition (SN) magazine, is available in a digital format? While SN readers continue to pour over the printed edition, the digital edition offers another option for receiving the magazine’s content. And it’s perfect for busy school nutrition professionals who are always on the go—it’s mobile device and tablet friendly! Plus, you can take advantage of useful features like sharing content via email or social media. To view January’s SN DigiMag, click here.


Upcoming Webinars
Best of #SNIC17 1 of 3: Fats in Vogue, Wheat Woes, Uh-oh GMOs 
2:00 pm ET Wednesday, February 8, 2017
Join Dr. Jim Painter for a fresh take on some of the biggest trends in the food industry! In case, you don’t make it to SNIC 2017 be sure to attend this webinar to broaden your perspectives on the latest information and research on fats, the gluten-free movement and the use of GMOs in our foods. Participation in this webinar is worth 1 SNA CEU. Learn more.

Annual National Conference Reminders

ANC 2017 Atlanta Exhibit Hall Sign-up
Don’t miss an opportunity to network with fellow exhibitors, demo your culinary expertise and meet influential decision-makers at the hottest event in school nutrition! See available exhibit space for the Annual National Conference (ANC) in Atlanta at the Georgia World Congress Center on July 9-12, 2017. Contact Crystal Harper-Pierre at (301) 686-3140 or charper@schoolnutrition.org to reserve your space.

Culinary Demonstrations
Culinary Demonstrations provide an opportunity to showcase your latest food products, recipes, techniques, nutrition and food presentation skills, and offer ways to enhance school meals and increase participation. These six demonstration slots will be available for purchase of $3,300 each. You must be exhibiting at ANC 2017 in order to present a demo.
[Culinary Demo application]

New Product Showcase
Enhance your visibility at ANC by displaying your product within the New Produce Showcase. The Showcase is a one-of-a-kind display of the new products, services and equipment positioned outside of the Exhibit Hall in a high traffic area. It is a quick and effective way to introduce and promote your product to the 6,800+ ANC attendees. Slots are available on a first-come, first-served-basis. Take advantage of this tremendous opportunity and reserve your spot no later than May 31, 2017. Don’t miss out!
[New Product Showcase application]

Certificate of Insurance
It is mandatory for all companies exhibiting at ANC 2017 to carry worker’s compensation, comprehensive general liability (including products and operations), independent contractors, personal injury and blanket contractual liability. It is strongly recommended that exhibitors carry insurance to cover loss/damage to their exhibits and personal property while it is located at or in transit to or from the convention center. You cannot access your booth until SNA receives the Certificate of Insurance (COI). Deadline to submit your COI to SNA is May 31, 2017.
[Atlanta Certificate of Insurance example]

Legislative & Regulatory Update

USDA Releases Memo Outlining Flexibility for Target 2 Sodium Requirements for 2017-18
On January 6, 2017, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released a memo, SP 15-2017, to regional and state directors regarding flexibility for the Target 2 sodium requirements for School Year 2017-18. As you may know, Target 2 sodium requirements are scheduled to take effect on July 1, 2017. To help address some challenges with meeting Target 2 reduction, USDA is offering some flexibility. School food authorities (SFAs) are expected to comply, however if SFAs that are working toward compliance, but are not fully in compliance, they will NOT incur fiscal action during administrative reviews.

During the period of flexibility, USDA's Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) plans to continue to gather ongoing challenges in order to develop technical assistance. Review the memo SP 15-2017 for further guidance.

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