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Oklahoma State University dining services creates label program for prepared foods

Oklahoma State University today announced a new on-campus food nutrition labeling system to help students make healthier eating choices.

The program provides nutritional information forgrab-and-go foods that are prepared fresh each day in OSU University Dining Services (UDS) kitchens.

"Between classes, jobs and outside activities, OSU students are always on the go, and their hectic schedules means that they sometimes prioritize convenience over health when it comes to food options," said Terry Baker, director, OSU University Dining Services. "University Dining Service created the nutritional label program for prepared foods as a way to help educate students about healthy eating lifestyles by providing them the nutrition information they need to make better choices."

As part of the program, University Dining Services created labels for more than 800 prepared foods available on campus. Label information includes serving size, number of servings per package, ingredients, nutritional values and allergen information. The rise of food-related allergies across the country as well as among the OSU student population made the inclusion of allergen information particularly important.

"Healthy eating is a vital component of our campaign to become America’s HEALTHIEST campus, and the new OSU food labeling system gives students the information they need to make good eating decisions," said Ann Hargis, OSU First Lady. "College is a crucial time for students who may be away from home for the first time. The lifestyle decisions and habits they form here may impact the rest of their lives, which is why we want our students to be armed with the best information possible ."

In addition to the detailed nutrition labels, UDS already designates healthy prepared food options with the "Choose Orange" label. Implemented in 2007, the bright orange labels adhere to the USDA dietary guidelines.