EMERYVILLE, Calif. - (BUSINESS WIRE) - Jul. 16, 2012 - The ongoing effort to improve nutrition and access to good-for-you food and beverage choices for kids in schools just got a healthy boost. Jamba Juice Company (NASDAQ: JMBA), with nutrition guidance from National Dairy Council®, today announced a new fruit and dairy beverage for K-12 schools. The healthy smoothie, naturally sweetened with fruit and fruit juice, combines the nutrient-rich benefits of fat-free milk with real fruit. The beverage will be unveiled this week at the School Nutrition Association conference in Denver.
School nutrition professionals, the USDA and parent/teacher groups have been working to improve the nutrition in school meals, but also have wrestled with cost considerations and finding options kids will actually consume. “This is an important step in the right direction,” said Kathleen Zelman, MPH, RD, LD, a nutrition and food, author and member of the Jamba Healthy Living Council. “This project moves us closer towards the goal of providing schools with nutritious food and beverage solutions at a reasonable cost per-serving.”
“Kids should love the natural sweetness of this healthy smoothie,” continued Zelman. “It’s made with nutrient-rich real fruit and fat-free milk that not only tastes great, but also helps address the recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and can be offered as an a la carte item at school meal.”
Jamba is entering the second year of its JambaGO™ initiative, a program aimed at bringing better nutrition to kids with full fruit and vegetable servings in smoothie beverages. “We believe the program needed a dairy component to reach its full potential as a relevant healthy option in school foodservice programs,” said Julie Washington, chief brand officer, Jamba Juice Company. “Jamba reached out to National Dairy Council® and Dairy Research Institute®, founded by America’s dairy farmers, for help with dairy nutrition expertise and in formulating a new dairy and fruit drink. They responded with a dedicated team of nutrition and product development experts.” JambaGO smoothies are being served in about 100 schools around the nation and the company expects that number to grow to between 400-500 installations by year end.
According to the USDA Dietary Guidelines, sodas, energy and sports drinks are a top source of added sugars in the American diet. Public health officials are concerned about the steady rise of empty calories consumed by young people and are seeking ways to curb the intake of excess calories to address obesity and the health of the nation. “Dairy farmers and dairy companies want to help students get the benefits of essential nutrients found in products made from fat-free milk, such as calcium, potassium and protein,” said Jean Ragalie, RD, president, National Dairy Council®. “Adding dairy to the fruit-based JambaGO smoothie offerings demonstrates our continued commitment to innovation to develop healthy food and beverage choices that children will enjoy.”
Schools continue to be a vital link in providing better nutrition for kids. “The current JambaGO program has been a huge success for us,” said Ken Llewellyn, food service director and nutrition specialist for the Crane School District, Crane, MO. “We like it because we’re offering kids beverages that deliver the nutrient benefits of real fruit, including vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fiber. The new option coming with real fruit and fat-free milk will be a great addition. The JambaGO program has helped us boost student involvement in our breakfast program by over 10 percent and as a result we are now experiencing 72 percent participation.”
The new fat-free dairy and fruit beverage is available in berry and peach flavors and is expected to be available to schools starting in September 2012.
Made with fat-free milk blended with fruit juices and apple, strawberry, and blueberry fruits, the Berry Fruit Smoothie contains one serving of fruit and one-half serving of fat-free dairy per eight fluid ounces, is fat-free, cholesterol free, low sodium food , and is formulated to be a good source of protein, potassium and phosphorus and an excellent source of calcium and vitamin C.
The Peach Fruit Smoothie is made with fat-free dairy blended with fruit juices and peach fruits. It contains one serving of fruit and one-half serving of fat-free dairy per eight fluid ounces and is fat-free, cholesterol free, and low sodium food. It is formulated to be a good source of protein, potassium, vitamin C, and phosphorous and an excellent source of riboflavin (vitamin B2) and calcium.
Founded in 1990, Jamba Juice Company (NASDAQ: JMBA) is a leading restaurant retailer of better-for-you, specialty beverage and food offerings, which include great tasting, whole fruit smoothies, fresh squeezed juices and juice blends, teas, hot oatmeal, breakfast wraps, sandwiches and mini-wraps, California Flatbreads™, frozen yogurt, and a variety of baked goods and snacks. Jamba-branded products for at-home enjoyment are also available through select retailers across the nation and in Jamba outlets. As of April 3, 2012, there were 769 Jamba Juice store locations globally. Jamba is a proud sponsor of “Team Up for a Healthy America” in the fight against childhood obesity and encourages fans to join the Team Up community of celebrities, athletes and other leaders committed to getting kids active and involved at www.myhealthpledge.com. Fans of Jamba Juice can find out more about Jamba Juice's locations as well as specific offerings and promotions by visiting the Jamba Juice website at www.JambaJuice.com or by contacting Jamba’s Guest Services team at 1-866-4R-FRUIT (473-7848).
National Dairy Council® (NDC), the non-profit organization funded by the national dairy checkoff program, is committed to nutrition education and research-based communications. NDC provides science-based nutrition information to, and in collaboration with, a variety of stakeholders committed to fostering a healthier nation, including health professionals, educators, school nutrition directors, academia, industry, consumers and media. Established in 1915, NDC comprises a staff of registered dietitians and nutrition research and communications experts across the country. NDC has taken a leadership role in promoting child health and wellness through programs such as Fuel Up to Play 60. Developed by NDC and the National Football League (NFL), Fuel Up to Play 60 encourages youth to consume nutrient-rich foods and achieve at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day. For more information, visit www.NationalDairyCouncil.org.
Dairy Research Institute® was established under the leadership of America's dairy farmers with a commitment to nutrition, product and sustainability research. The Dairy Research Institute is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization created to strengthen the dairy industry’s access to and investment in the technical research required to drive innovation and demand for dairy products and ingredients globally. The Institute works with and through industry, academic, government and commercial partners to drive pre-competitive research in nutrition, products and sustainability on behalf of the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy®, the National Dairy Council® and other partners. The Dairy Research Institute is primarily funded by the national dairy check-off program managed by Dairy Management Inc.™
Kathleen Zelman is director of nutrition for the number one health and wellness website, overseeing diet, nutrition and food content on the site. She also serves as senior nutrition correspondent, writes features and expert reviews, and provides expert editorial review of diet and nutrition articles. Zelman has been a dietetic internship director at Ochsner Medical Institutions and assistant professor at St. Mary’s Dominican College, both in New Orleans. Zelman is active in local, state and national dietetic associations and currently serves as director at large on the Academy board of directors. She has served as a trustee on the Georgia Dietetic Foundation and two terms as a delegate to the Academy House of Delegates. In 2007, Zelman was awarded the prestigious Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics “Media Excellence Award” for her contribution and commitment to educating consumers about food and nutrition. The American Society for Nutrition (ASN) named Kathleen the 2011 recipient of their “Nutrition Science Media Award” for outstanding science and nutrition journalism. She has also served as a judge for nutrition journalism James Beard Awards since 2009. Zelman served twelve years as a national spokesperson for the Academy and has over a thousand print and television appearances including CNN, Good Morning America, NBC Nightly News, The Wall St. Journal and New York Times. She has contributed to books including Paul Prudhomme’s A Fork in the Road, Healthy Eating for Babies and Toddlers and A Harvest of Healthy Foods. She is an invited speaker at professional meetings worldwide on a variety of topical nutrition issues.
Source: Jamba Juice Company
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