banner image of improving school nutrition

The MA Department of Public Health, in collaboration with the MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, developed nutrition standards for certain foods and drinks sold or provided during the school day. The goal of the standards is to ensure that public schools offer students food and beverage choices that will enhance learning, contribute to their healthy growth and development, and help them develop life-long healthy eating behaviors.

These standards apply to competitive foods and beverages sold or provided in public schools, which include items in:

  • School cafeteria offered as a la carte items
  • Vending machines
  • School stores and snack bars

Nutrition food and beverage regulations include:

  • Offering 100% juice in 4-ounce servings or less
  • Offering plain, low-fat and fat-free milk in 8-ounce servings or less
  • Eliminating drinks with added sugars or sweeteners
  • Setting standards for the amount of calories, fat, saturated fat, trans fat, sugar, caffeine, and sodium contained in foods and beverages provided
  • Offering whole grains
  • Eliminating artificial sweeteners
  • Making water available to all students during the day without charge
  • Offering for sale fresh fruits and non-fried vegetables at any location where food is sold
  • Prohibiting the use of fryolators for competitive foods
  • Making nutrition information available to students for non-prepackaged competitive foods and beverages served in the cafeteria.

Overview of Healthy Students, Healthy Schools: Revised Guidance for Implementing the MA School Nutrition Standards for Competitive Foods and Beverages pdf format of Healthy Students, Healthy Schools
file size 1MB doc format of Healthy Students, Healthy Schools .

Get more information on the School Nutrition Regulations.


This information is provided by the Department of Public Health.