SNA Sends Letter to USDA Secretary Vilsack to Address Supply Chain Disruption in Schools

2021-08-23

SNA is constantly monitoring continued supply chain disruptions and their impact on school meal programs during the back to school season. We have been in close touch with USDA regarding these issues, and today, SNA sent recommendations to USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack on ways the Department can ease pressure on programs struggling with procurement problems.

In June, SNA wrote to Sec. Vilsack to alert the department to worsening supply chain disruptions in the school nutrition industry. USDA responded immediately, meeting with SNA’s Board, Executive Committee and industry partners. Since that time, SNA has shared numerous examples of procurement challenges from SNA members nationwide.

Today’s letter urges USDA to ease a variety of procurement, meal pattern, monitoring and reporting requirements to reduce burdens on school nutrition professionals scrambling to secure food and supplies for students, while also meeting federal regulatory mandates. The letter also calls for additional financial support for school meal programs.

SNA recognizes the enormous hurdles our members face this back to school season as you pursue the mission of nourishing students for success. We will continue to advocate on your behalf with USDA and Congress and hope you will reach out to your Members of Congress to let them know how this issue is impacting your program.

Read SNA's Letter to USDA

Below are several SNA resources to support members during back to school:

  • PR resources: Communicating with families in your district about the benefits of free meal service this year and educating them on these procurement problems is crucial. SNA developed these customizable talking points to help. Other members-only PR resources can be found here.
     
  • SN Magazine feature article: The August 2021 issue explores what to expect for SY2021-22 for labor, the supply chain, inventory and other hurdles. Bonus web content includes a Q&A with a USDA spokesperson on the likely impacts of supply chain challenges on USDA Foods.

  • Upcoming webinar: On September 30, SNA will host a webinar with USDA officials to discuss procurement challenges and other hot topics. Register now.

  • More to come: SNA is producing a short video on the supply chain challenges for members to share with administrators and community members.

 

Contact Us

2900 S. Quincy Street, Suite 700
Arlington, VA 22206
servicecenter@schoolnutrition.org  

Tel (703) 824-3000
Fax (703) 824-3015

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