Healthy Foods and Beverages In Parks
Parks and recreation facilities already promote healthier behaviors such as physical activity and social connectivity through sports and education programs, and other out-of-school time activities. Since 2010, the Health Department has partnered with the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board to improve the food environment for the millions of visitors each year.
Minneapolis Park & Recreation Board (MPRB) is pleased to have a Healthy Food Policy that ensures healthy food options for park users and that aligns with Minneapolis Public Schools nutrition expectations. MPRB recognizes that healthy food fits into its vision to inspire healthy lifestyles. MPRB is excited to act as a model for other park and recreation systems and communities who also may be interested in passing healthy food policies.
The policy states:
- The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board (MPRB) will provide residents and park users, especially youth, with increased access to healthy foods.
- The MPRB will actively work to provide a healthy food environment for youth, residents and park users experiencing programs or services within facilities owned and operated by the MPRB.
- Residents and park users will have access to affordable, nutritious, and appealing foods that accommodate various dietary needs and food cultures.
For more information, contact:
In 2015 MPRB sought a new vendor to provide 80% healthy options in the beverage vending machines to begin service in early 2017.
In 2014, MPRB contracted with Midwest Vending to provide 100% healthy snack options in all Recreation Centers. Currently, about half of Recreation Centers have the healthy machines and additional sites are identified quarterly.
Progress & Accomplishments
Since the MPRB Healthy Food Policy was passed in 2013, post-policy evaluation data shows:
- Staff reported being more likely to provide water at no cost, serve fresh fruit and vegetables and whole grains at their events and in programs such as Rec Plus
- Receipt analysis shows fewer unhealthy foods are being served at Park events
- 500 summer youth employees were trained on the health effects of sugar sweetened beverages and 73% of them felt it was important to have healthier beverages available in park vending machines
- Sales data shows that park visitors are purchasing healthy options across the City with North Commons park having the highest sales in the last quarter. Staff report positive feedback from park visitors about the healthy options in the snack machines.
- MPRB Healthy Food Policy
- Healthy Vending Machine Initiatives
- Healthy Vending Guide
- Making Healthier Eating Choices
Should you require a reasonable accommodation in order to fully participate, or information in an alternative format, please contact 612-673-2301.
Para asistencia 612-673-2700 - Rau kev pab 612-673-2800 - Hadii aad Caawimaad u baahantahay 612-673-3500.
Last updated Aug 14, 2018