The war on soda might be waging on in corner stores and at the dinner table, but there’s one place where it has been conspicuously absent: your kid’s school. Soda companies began making contracts in the ‘90’s with schools in order to subsidize school budgets. After the initial glamour of junk food in the cafeteria wore off, parents and teachers began to realize what was once a saving grace was hurting students’ waistlines. And then out the soda companies went, right?
Wrong. Large soda conglomerates, like Pepsi and Coke, are still present in up to 80 percent of public schools. These schools that still allow high levels of junk food — present either in vending machines or school lunches — have heavier kids. A study recently released by the University of Illinois found out that kids who lived in states with the strongest anti-junk food in schools legislation weighed less than those who lived in states without similar laws. While this study did not suggest that there was a direct relation, the correlation begs for more research.
With increasing anti-soda and anti-junk food legislation changing America, it is most likely only a matter of time before the number of schools that still have contracts with soda companies begins to dwindle.