Though East Hampton is a solidly middle-class town in Connecticut, dozens of families are applying for free school meals for the first time as they contend with high food costs and tight budgets.
Like their peers in most of the US, East Hampton children soon will no longer automatically receive breakfast and lunch at school without charge as they have for the past two years. That’s because Congress in June did not extend the Covid-19 pandemic waivers that had expanded free school meals to all students, regardless of income.
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School nutrition professionals are gearing up for more supply chain challenges this upcoming school year, a new report by the School Nutrition Association reveals.
The report compiled findings from a series of listening sessions held this spring with school nutrition professionals, food distributors and state agency staff.
During the sessions, participants revealed their current supply chain struggles and anticipated another hard year for school foodservice. Click here to read the full article.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will allocate close to $1 billion to assist school nutrition programs with purchasing American-grown items amid continued supply chain challenges, the Biden administration announced Thursday.
The funds, totaling $943 million, will be dispensed to school districts via state agencies and is supplemental to the $1 billion in procurement assistance that the USDA earmarked for school nutrition programs last December. Click here to read the full article.
Supply chain disruptions, inflation and rising gas prices are producing unprecedented complications for school nutrition teams. And the federal government is about to make things worse. Click here to read the full article.
E S Foods announced today that it is acquiring assets of school foodservice company Notables. Based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Notables is a producer of school meal kits – a specialty of E S Foods for over 15 years. Click here to read the full article.
The morning meal is in the spotlight as school nutrition programs across the country celebrate National School Breakfast Week, held March 7-11.
In honor of the week, Chartwells K12 Vice President of Culinary Peter Gilhooly spoke with FSD about the special dishes that will appear on Chartwells K12 menus as well as what’s trending in school breakfast. Click here to read the full article from Foodservice Director.
A lawmaker has introduced a bill in Congress that would increase the reimbursement rate for school lunches. The Level Up Nutrition for Children in Every School (LUNCHES) Act would increase the reimbursement rate to 59.5 cents per meal.
Earlier this year, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) raised the reimbursement rate to provide schools with an additional 25 cents per lunch to help combat rising food costs. Click here to read the full article.
USDA Announces Increased Funding to Support School Meals and to Help Continue Serving Healthy Meals to Kids
From the United States Department of Agriculture:
WASHINGTON, Jan. 7, 2022 – U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced an adjustment in school meal reimbursements to help schools continue to serve children healthy and nutritious meals. This move will put an estimated $750 million more into school meal programs across the nation this year, making sure federal reimbursements keep pace with food and operational costs, while ensuring children continue to receive healthy meals at school.
In a letter to families this week, Indiana School District, Noblesville Schools let them know supply chain issues are causing problems in the lunchroom, which means lunches will have much less variety than normal. Click here to read the full article.
Problems in the supply chain are showing up in many areas — from companies not producing enough product, to delivery delays and a shortage of workers in the trucking and warehousing industries. Keeping properly stocked with food is a particular issue for schools — and for food banks and pantries, which have seen spikes in hunger due to the pandemic. Click here to read the full article.
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