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Change Eyed for 'Junk-Food Rule'

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The Agriculture Department, in response to a November ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, last week proposed regulatory changes that would lift restrictions on the sale of foods of "minimal nutritional value" in schools participating in the federal lunch and breakfast programs.

In 1980, the department restricted the sale of such foods from the beginning of the school day until the end of the last school-lunch period. Foods--such as soft drinks and candies--that provided less than 5 percent per 100 calories of a group of specified nutrients were restricted. In the suit by the National Soft Drink Association, the court rejected the "time and place" portion of the rule. The proposed change would restrict foods of "minimal nutritional value" only during breakfast and lunch periods, and only in cafeterias or other food-service areas.--ah

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