Senator Stabenow Applauds Selection of Michigan State University for Grant to Prevent Childhood Obesity

Thursday, March 26, 2015

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow, Ranking Member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, today applauded the United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) announcement that Michigan State University (MSU) has been selected to roll out a new childhood obesity intervention program. Sen. Stabenow has led the effort to increase access to fresh and nutritious foods and help combat childhood obesity, which will keep our children healthy and our country strong.

The $833,509 grant is awarded by the USDA's Agriculture and Food Research Initiative, which is a competitive grant program that was included in Sen. Stabenow's 2014 Farm Bill. The farm bill was signed into law by President Obama at MSU last year.

"Making sure our children are fit to learn, serve and succeed starts with having the right foods," said Stabenow. "I'm extremely proud of Michigan State's leadership when it comes to agricultural research, and the support announced today will help our children live healthy and successful lives."

"MSU's College of Social Science and College of Nursing, MSU Extension, the University of Michigan and Head Start are partnering together to address one of Michigan's most important health-related issues- obesity in early childhood. This grant allows us to provide the research, education and outreach necessary to help Michigan's next generation make healthier lifestyle choices." Said Dean of the College of Social Science Marietta Baba, Interim Director of MSU Extension Ray Hammerschmidt and Associate Dean for Research at the College of Nursing Barbara Smith.

This support will help MSU researchers work with the University of Michigan and the regional Head Start program to identify and implement interventions that address obesity prevention among families.

The Agriculture and Food Research Initiative's Childhood Obesity Prevention Challenge Area supports efforts to reduce the prevalence of obesity among children and adolescents. This funding comes as part of a national, $9 million announcement for childhood obesity intervention programs through colleges and universities across the country.