Heartland Payment Systems School Solutions Receives USDA Approval for NUTRIKIDS Software
(Benzinga Lightning Feed Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Heartland School
Solutions, a division of Heartland Payment Systems (NYSE: HPY), one
of the nation's largest payments processors, has received USDA
approval for use in certification of compliance with lunch meal
requirements for its NUTRIKIDS Menu Planning & Nutritional Analysis
software. This approval is in compliance with the new National School
Lunch Program meal pattern requirements under the Healthy,
Hunger-Free Kids Act (HHFKA).
More than 8,000 school districts currently using Heartland's
NUTRIKIDS software will now be able to apply for six-cent
reimbursement for school lunch meals to help offset the cost of
compliance with the new law. NUTRIKIDS is one of only four menu-planning tools currently certified by the USDA. The expensive
implementation of HHFKA is expected to dramatically affect school
meal revenue, making it important for districts to become compliant
with the new law in order to receive the additional reimbursement,
especially for larger districts serving millions of meals annually.
"The purpose of NUTRIKIDS is to give districts a faster, more
efficient way to develop school breakfast and lunch menus that are
compliant with USDA regulations," said Terry Roberts, executive
director of Heartland School Solutions. "The move toward providing
more fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains in school meals is
important to instill healthy eating habits in American children,
which aids in reducing childhood obesity. Though the school meals are
more expensive under the new requirements, the certification of our
NUTRIKIDS software will help districts provide healthier options to
kids without risking the financial sustainability of their meal
programs. Overall, this further demonstrates our market leadership
position in partnering with school districts to help improve their bottom line while delivering healthy meals to their students."
Under HHFKA, school meals are evaluated for a balance between meat,
grain, vegetable, fruit and milk components. Meals must be analyzed
for calories, saturated fat, sodium content and portion size, with
compliant meals including more whole grains, less sodium and zero
trans fats. The nutritional guidelines put forth by HHFKA are easily
tracked with Heartland's NUTRIKIDS software, which also creates an
automatic process to submit for the six-cent reimbursement. More
information about NUTRIKIDS Menu Planning & Nutritional Analysis
software can be found by visiting NUTRIKIDS.com.
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