School Nutrition Programs Receive Boost
School may be out for summer, but like me, we’re thinking about lunch and the USDA is now putting forth an effort to make sure that we’ve got more locally produced food up for grabs when it comes to school lunches.
USDA providing nearly $1 billion in additional funding to help schools purchase American-grown food for their meal programs. The agency also says the recent signing of the Keep Kids Fed Act equips schools, summer meal sites, and childcare programs with extra resources so they can continue serving children through the 2022-2023 school year.
Both moves are a response to the significant challenges child nutrition program operators continue to face, such as high food costs and supply chain disruptions. The $943 million boost from the department is getting provided through the USDA’s Commodity Credit Corporation. Funds will be distributed by state agencies to schools across the country to help them buy domestically-grown foods for their meal programs. This assistance builds on the $1 billion in Supply Chain Assistance funds USDA allocated in December 2021, which states can use this year as well as the next to provide schools with funding for commodity purchases.