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Missouri School Meals are Free but Finding Enough Food to Feed Kids is Another Story

Government leaders are exploring ways to incentivize food distributors to prioritize schools. Several Missouri K-12 schools are struggling to get meals from foodservice providers. Barbara Shaw, the Food and Nutrition Services Coordinator for the Missouri Department of Education, says the disruptions are highly driven by distribution warehouse worker shortages.

Shaw says an increase in demand fluctuation is also causing issues because all schools can feed kids for free and the demand has shifted at places like grocery stores and restaurants. She says the state has talked to schools having problems and given them suggestions to find food, such as calling nonprofits, local grocers, and farmers.


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