Gery Chico is standing up for sweet baked goods. The chairman of the Illinois State Board of Education says it’s one thing for school lunches to conform to federal nutrition standards, but don’t mess with birthday cakes. “I think you get to the absurd when you want to get to the heart of certain cultural-slash-customs like birthday cake in the second and first grade,” Chico said during a presentation about new federal guidelines over what foods can be sold in schools.
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“It's highly unlikely,” said ISBE nutrition division administrator Mark Haller, “that an individual making cupcakes for sale would be able to meet the requirement.” It's possible the board will ask the USDA for exemptions from its Smart Snacks in School program.