Pasta is now classed as a vegetable in U.S. schools. New dietary regulations means it counts towards the vegetable requirements in school lunches. New guidelines state: "Pasta made of vegetable flour may credit as a vegetable, even if the pasta is not served with another recognizable vegetable." The pasta must be made with potato, soy or vegetable-based flour. Critics of the rules said bread could also be a vegetable as that is made from flour.
Other guidelines include halving the fruit in children's breakfast and increasing burgers, fries, pizza and other high-calorie food full of fat and salt. The department said the new rules would reduce food waste and was "a more common-sense" way to provide students with nutritious, appetizing meals. A health expert said: "This makes absolutely no sense. Politics and industry pressure should not interfere with what is best for children's health."