Prevalence of Evidence-Based School Meal Practices and Associations with Reported Food Waste across a National Sample of U.S. Elementary Schools
1.1. Evidence-Based School Meal Practices and Their Prevalence in US Schools
1.2. Evidence-Based Meal Practices and Associations with Food Waste
1.3. Regulatory Rollbacks and Evidence-Based Meals Practices
1.4. Study Purpose
2. Materials and Methods
2.1. Data Collection
2.3. Demographic Data
2.4. Data Analysis
2.4.2. Statistical Analysis
3.1. Descriptive Statistics and Prevalence Estimates for School Meal Practices
3.2. School Meal Environment Characteristics Predicting Food Waste
Institutional Review Board Statement
Informed Consent Statement
Data Availability Statement
Conflicts of Interest
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|Variable Name||Number (Unweighted)||Percentage (Weighted)|
|Medium (>450 to 621 students)||165||28.8|
|Large (>621 students)||107||21.3|
|Socioeconomic status (% of students eligible for FRPL)|
|Middle (>33% to ≤66%)||209||36.6|
|US Census Region|
|Racial/ethnic composition of students|
|Predominantly (≥66%) White non-Latino||244||34.3|
|Majority (≥50%) Black non-Latino||43||8.9|
|Majority (≥50%) Latino||83||21.6|
|Other majority or diverse||172||35.3|
|Participates in School Breakfast Program|
|Breakfast service strategy (check all that apply) ǂ|
|Traditional/in cafeteria||74.4||69.8, 78.6|
|Breakfast in the classroom||30.4||25.8, 35.5|
|Second-chance breakfast||12.0||8.7, 16.4|
|Grab-and-go breakfast||23.1||19.3, 27.4|
|Breakfast service strategy combinations ǂ|
|In cafeteria only||44.3||39.1, 49.5|
|Cafeteria + at least 1 other strategy||26.0||22.1, 30.4|
|Only alternative strategies||24.1||20.2, 28.5|
|School serves breakfast but answer missing||5.6||3.4, 9.1|
|Lunch duration for third grade classes|
|20 or fewer minutes||37.6||32.0, 43.4|
|21–29 min||23.2||19.2, 27.6|
|30+ min||39.3||33.9, 44.9|
|Timing of lunch to mid-day recess for third grade classes|
|Lunch then recess||52.8||47.6, 57.9|
|Recess then lunch||25.4||20.9, 31.5|
|Recess is not directly before/after lunch||11.3||8.6, 14.6|
|Varies by class||10.5||7.7, 14.2|
|Used relaxed nutrition standards||112||21.0||156||29.4||249||49.5|
|Meal modifications since last year||N||%||N||%||N||%|
|Low-fat dairy options||6||0.8||455||87.6||55||11.6|
|Variety of entrée options||22||4.0||379||72.3||115||23.7|
|Never||1–2 Times||3+ Times|
|Promotional strategies used for meals||N||%||N||%||N||%|
|Student taste tests||326||66.3||133||25.3||49||8.4|
|Student advisory groups||406||81.9||81||16.1||11||2.0|
|Cooking club demonstrations/classes||424||84.7||59||11.4||17||3.9|
|Social media (Facebook, Twitter, etc.)||353||72.6||103||19.1||45||8.3|
|Engagement with PTA or parent groups||335||66.0||135||27.7||33||6.3|
|Amount Eaten||All||Most||Some||A Little||None|
(Entrée, Milk, Fruit) ⸙⸙
|Number of promotional strategies (0 to 6)||−0.063||0.025||0.013||−0.075||0.019||<0.001||−0.011||0.022||0.625|
|≥30 Min lunch duration (vs <30 min)||−0.119||0.078||0.131||−0.008||0.062||0.897||−0.083||0.078||0.283|
|Mid-day recess timing|
|After lunch (referent)||-||-||-|
|Neither directly before or after lunch||0.057||0.105||0.585||−0.221||0.082||0.007||−0.172||0.123||0.162|
|Timing varies by class||−0.328||0.206||0.111||−0.099||0.135||0.465||−0.020||0.126||0.875|
|Small (≤450; referent)||-||-||-|
|Medium (>450 to 621 students)||−0.104||0.092||0.258||−0.076||0.072||0.293||0.064||0.075||0.396|
|Large (>621 students)||0.112||0.109||0.303||−0.113||0.099||0.253||−0.146||0.116||0.208|
|Socioeconomic status (% eligible for FRPL)|
|Higher (≤33%; referent)||-||-||-|
|Mid (>33% to ≤66%)||0.053||0.089||0.549||−0.017||0.078||0.831||−0.021||0.090||0.815|
|Student racial/ethnic composition|
|Predominantly (≥66%) White non-Latino (referent)||-||-||-|
|Majority (≥50%) Black non-Latino||0.083||0.205||0.686||−0.149||0.154||0.333||0.180||0.183||0.326|
|Majority (≥50%) Latino||0.118||0.142||0.406||0.034||0.128||0.792||0.330||0.135||0.015|
|Other majority or diverse||−0.105||0.100||0.296||0.021||0.081||0.793||0.186||0.097||0.057|
|Number of schools||484||479||481|
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Calvert, H.G.; Ohri-Vachaspati, P.; McQuilkin, M.; Boedeker, P.; Turner, L. Prevalence of Evidence-Based School Meal Practices and Associations with Reported Food Waste across a National Sample of U.S. Elementary Schools. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 8558. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18168558
Calvert HG, Ohri-Vachaspati P, McQuilkin M, Boedeker P, Turner L. Prevalence of Evidence-Based School Meal Practices and Associations with Reported Food Waste across a National Sample of U.S. Elementary Schools. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(16):8558. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18168558Chicago/Turabian Style
Calvert, Hannah G., Punam Ohri-Vachaspati, Michaela McQuilkin, Peter Boedeker, and Lindsey Turner. 2021. "Prevalence of Evidence-Based School Meal Practices and Associations with Reported Food Waste across a National Sample of U.S. Elementary Schools" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18, no. 16: 8558. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18168558