Welcome to the State of California 

About the Nutrition Education and Obesity Prevention Branch


The mission of the Nutrition Education and Obesity Prevention Branch (NEOPB) is to create innovative partnerships that empower low-income Californians to increase fruit and vegetable consumption, physical activity, and food security with the goal of preventing obesity and other diet related chronic diseases.

Program At A Glance – Creating Champions For Change 

Since 1997, NEOPB has led a statewide movement of local, state, and national partners collectively working toward improving the health status of 7 million low-income California parents and children. Multiple venues are used to facilitate behavior change in homes, schools, worksites, and communities to create environments that support fruit and vegetable consumption and physical activity.

With support from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), NEOPB now works with nearly 150 different public and non-profit agencies. This has enabled California to qualify for federal reimbursements for nutrition education starting at $2.8 million in 1997 and rising to nearly $110 million in 2011. About 80 percent of these funds support community-based programs directly. NEOPB provides statewide leadership through:

  • 85 local assistance contracts to qualifying school districts, local health departments, food banks, health centers, Indian tribal organizations, and other public and non-profit entities;
  • 30 competitive grants for Regional Networks, non-profit organizations, and African American faith organizations;
  • 12 grants to leadership and training organizations;
  • Bilingual advertising and public relations that support community-based programs;
  • 5 tailored fruit, vegetable and physical activity campaigns and programs (African American, Latino, Worksite, Retail, and Children’s campaigns and programs);
  • Development and testing of education resources;
  • Training and technical assistance to contractors and unfunded partners that serve low-income families;
  • Administrative and fiscal oversight, and
  • Applied research, surveys, and evaluation

  • NEOPB Works 

    NEOPB conducts multiple statewide surveys and program evaluations to measure success. Three surveys are available to track population trends of the targeted behaviors, and multiple outcome evaluations are conducted to test the effectiveness of community programs. As NEOPB's infrastructure evolved over time, low-income Californians enjoyed positive gains in fruit and vegetable consumption, physical activity, and enrollment in SNAP.

  • Fruit and Vegetable Consumption has Increased - the percent of low-income adults who reached the minimum 5-serving goal for fruit and vegetable consumption rose from a baseline of 24 percent in 1997 to 46 percent in 20071.
  • Physical Activity has Moved in a Positive Direction - the proportion of low-income adults meeting the recommended level of at least 150 minutes per week of moderate to vigorous physical activity grew from 36 percent in 2001 to 46 percent in 20072
  • More People Qualified for SNAP - through the Food Stamp Access Improvement Project, in 2010 it is estimated that NEOPB partners qualified an additional 28,400 households for SNAP3

    Target Population 

    USDA requires NEOPB programs and funding be targeted only to SNAP recipients and those with similar low incomes, and with formal waiver approval, other households with income at or below 185% of the Federal Poverty Level in approved census tract locations and other local sites.

    Key Partners 

    Principal partners are the USDA, Western Regional Office, and the California Department of Social Services. Key partners include: the American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, California Center for Research on Women and Families, California Department of Education, California Department of Food and Agriculture, California Women Lead! (formerly California Elected Women’s Association for Education and Research), California Medical Association Foundation, Center for Civic Partnerships, the Center for Collaborative Solutions, and the University of California, Davis, Food Stamp Nutrition Education Program. Partners through the National Fruit and Vegetable Alliance include the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Cancer Institute, the Produce for Better Health Foundation, and other non-profit and industry leaders.




  • NEOPB Webpage
  • Champions for Change
  • For more information, contact Ana Bolanos, Communications Manager at ana.bolanos@cdph.ca.gov


    1Sugerman SB, Foerster SB, Gregson J, Linares A, Hudes M.  California adults increase fruit and vegetable consumption from 1997-2007, J Nutr Educ Behav.
    (Accepted for publication)

    2California Department of Public Health; Network for a Healthy California. 2007 California Dietary Practices Survey Data Tables.  February, 2011 [cited February 2, 2011]; Available from: www.cdph.ca.gov/programs/cpns/Pages/2007CDPSDataTable.aspx.

    3California Food Stamp Program Access Improvement Plan FFY 2010 Final Report to the United States Department of Agriculture. December, 2010.



    Last modified on: 3/23/2015 4:17 PM