Home > News > Press Releases > 2006 > GOVERNOR AND AGRICULTURE SECRETARY JOIN NY JETS TO ENCOURAGE HEALTHY EATING IN SCHOOLS
GOVERNOR AND AGRICULTURE SECRETARY JOIN NY JETS TO ENCOURAGE HEALTHY EATING IN SCHOOLS
November 21, 2006
LODI – Governor Jon S. Corzine today teamed up with Agriculture Secretary Charles M. Kuperus, New York Jets President Jay Cross and offensive tackle D’Brickashaw Ferguson at Columbus Elementary School in Lodi to launch the Eat Right, Move More campaign. The campaign encourages Garden State students to eat the nutritious foods now being offered in schools throughout the state as part of a new school nutrition policy that focuses on healthier eating and more physical activity.
"We're teaching our kids to make better food choices and helping them to live better, fuller lives," said Governor Corzine. "By helping to teach this new generation about healthy eating and increased activity, the Jets are setting an example that we hope all New Jersey children will follow."
The campaign features posters of Ferguson in every school telling students, “When I have a healthy meal, it helps me play my best. Your school cafeteria has a variety of nutritious foods to keep you going all day long. So get up, eat right and move more!”
“There is such enthusiasm over the new nutrition guidelines that even though the policy does not have to be fully implemented until next year, many school districts have already put the policy in place or are on their way to putting it in place,” said Secretary Kuperus.
The campaign challenges New Jersey schools to submit their meal menus to determine the five schools that have made the most significant changes to improve their school nutrition environment and offer the most creative meal selections. Each of those five schools will receive a visit from a Jets player and one of those five will be randomly selected to be honored at the December 10th Jets home game against the Buffalo Bills at the Meadowlands.
“I am particularly proud of this outreach effort which will educate students about the importance of good nutrition and the options that are afforded to them in their school cafeterias,” said Jets President Jay Cross. “The New York Jets are committed to giving our children exposure to the sports and nutrition programs that they deserve. I want to thank Governor Corzine and Secretary Kuperus for working with us to implement this important program which will have a lasting effect on the lives of so many children.”
“It is an honor to be here today to discuss the importance of nutrition,” said Ferguson. “I know firsthand that eating right and exercising regularly are crucial, not only for those of us who grow up to become professional athletes, but for all kids.”
Schools are required to completely implement the new school nutrition policy by September of 2007. The most comprehensive in the nation, the policy covers pre-kindergarten through 12th grade students and limits fat and sugar content in foods offered in a la carte lines, snack bars and vending machines, school stores and as part of on-campus fund-raisers. For more information on the policy, visit www.nj.gov/agriculture/divisions/fn/childadult/school_model.html.
To be eligible to apply for the Eat Right Move More program, schools must participate in the national school lunch program, a federally funded program to ensure all children have access to a wholesome meal during the school day, which is administered by the New Jersey Department of Agriculture.
Over the past six years, the New York Jets and their charitable foundation donated or raised more than $6 million to promote youth health, fitness, and education, particularly in disadvantaged communities. The Jets strive to create new opportunities – whether by launching the first football team in an urban high school, providing additional after school instruction in an underperforming school district, or encouraging students to eat well and exercise regularly.
The Lodi School District has emphasized nutrition and healthy lifestyles for its students through implementation of the model school nutrition policy a full year ahead of schedule. In addition, the district participates in special programs both in the schools and out in the community – the district recently held a health and safety program for the community and the district’s food service management company, Pomptonian Food Service, operates a farmer’s market program in which they allow students to sample fresh fruits and vegetables.