Mid day meal program (School lunch program)

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  • Mid day meal program was introduced in 1961 to improve the school attendance by providing supplementary food from school
  • The main principles of this program are:
    • The mid day meal is aimed at supplementing, not substituting the home diet.
    • It should be made with locally available food stuffs
    • The cost of production should be low
    • The cooking process should not be complicated
    • It should provide half of the daily requirement for proteins and one third of daily requirement of calories
    • The recipe should be changed frequently to avoid monotony
  • The National Institute of Nutrition, Hyderabad has created recipes with the above principles in mind. They are available for free on request.
  • The program also aims at:
    • Bringing about change in the nutritional habits of children
    • Improve their educational performance
    • Introduction of nutritional education into curriculum
    • Improving school attendance.
  • The problem faced with the implementation of this program is that of the sheer amount of resources required in providing supplementary food to millions of children all over India

Model Menu for School Lunch Program:

Food item g/day/child
Cereals and millets 75
Pulses 30
Oils and fats 8
Leafy vegetables 30
Non leafy vegetables 30
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NIN – Acronym

NIN stands for: National Institute of Nutrition (India)