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School districts continue facing a food supply shortage

School Lunch
Des Moines Public Schools
School Lunch

The nationwide food supply shortage has hurt some schools districts in communities that need to serve lunch to students.

According to the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary school, the distributors that deliver the foods could be facing staffing issues or a lack of product availability because of the pandemic supply chain crisis.

Mallory McGowin with the DESE said another reason could be contracts that the schools have with distributors who send out school lunches.

"If that distributor can't meet all the terms and conditions of that contract their forcing distributors to have to drop that contract or let that school district know that they can not fulfill that contract". McGowin said.

Many companies are trying their best to satisfy all of the items schools have listed in their contract but the supply shortage is forcing them to only fulfill some orders.

McGowin said, "They do still try to fulfill some of the school district's orders so maybe they only get 25 or 30 percent of what they ordered but they are still able to get some food".

This continues to be an issue because lunch is typically the only meal that students receive in school. This urges faculty members to come up with alternate lunches to provide to children.

Some schools in Missouri are struggling with the food chain shortage but are trying their best to adjust until demand for food nationwide lessens.

Jefferson City said although they have dealt with lingering supply shortages they have been able to plan and adapt accordingly.

The Nutrition Department at Jefferson City Schools sent out a letter to parents last month informing them there will be interruptions to the supply of certain foods. However, the school board has inventory they are able to use in place of previously planned meals.

Columbia schools districts said they have also received delays and sometimes even cancellations for the delivery of school lunches but they are still able to provide alternate meals for their students.

The U-S-D-A will continue to provide waivers that allow schools to source foods and products when they face a shortage.

Kennedy Miller

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