Student Union Memorial Center vending machines now feature prominent markers to identify healthier snack options thanks to the efforts of Student Health Advocacy Committee members. The program looks to go campus-wide in the fall.
The University of Arizona students have partnered with the vending machine industry to provide healthy snack food alternatives.
The Student Health Advocacy Committee, known as SHAC, is a branch of the Associated Students of the University of Arizona. The committee worked with Tomdra Vending, the vending machine supplier in the student union, to implement the Fit Pick program.
SHAC participants organize health promotion and prevention activities and contribute to student health policy through the involvement with various faculty committees and nationally recognized health campaigns.
According to the merchandising association, the Fit Pick program was designed to help students make smart-snacking choices in an effort to curb skyrocketing obesity rates by leading the way in developing health and wellness solutions that work.
The Fit Pick program will help hungry customers identify healthier snack options within the vending machines on campus through the Fit Pick logo, which is placed next to snacks that meet the nutritional guidelines of the program.
The vending machines will feature the 35-10-35 guideline logo for healthier choices. Snacks that fit these standards have:
- 35 percent or fewer calories from fat
- 10 percent or fewer from saturated fat
- 35 percent total weight from sugar
Meghann Miller, the student nutrition coalition chair with SHAC who organizes healthy Cooking on Campus classes as part of her work with the group, said the SHAC is working to implement the Fit Pick program throughout the UA and hopes the program will be fully implemented by the fall of 2012.
"Before implementing Fit Pick at the Union, I took surveys that showed that people on campus are interested in healthier food options. That information, together with Tomdra's commitment to healthier choices, will hopefully impact vending sales and healthier choices in a positive way," said Miller.
Look for the Fit Pick stickers within the vending machines found in the student union, and soon throughout the whole UA campus.