HOUSTON COUNTY, Alabama (WTVY) – Nationwide supply chain issues currently plague infant nutrition programs.
Shortages across the country are creating a domino effect, falling directly into Wiregrass school cafeterias.
“We’ve had a few minor issues since starting school, but last week we received an email from the State Department advising us of some food shortages,” says Brandy White, Houston County Schools Superintendent. “So we didn’t know the magnitude until last week.”
Several factors contribute to this national issue.
“A lack of truck drivers, CDL drivers,” says Marie Payne, director of infant nutrition in Houston County schools. “Shortages in warehouses only for labor personnel, then in manufacturers themselves, limited materials to make the products we need.”
Typically, school districts in Alabama buy all groceries from one state vendor, but now they may have to go elsewhere.
“We serve, say, over 4,000 students a day,” continues Payne. “Now, during this particular crisis, if that was a correct word to use right now, we were allowed to come out of that, to fill in the shortages, so that we could contact other suppliers.”
There is no need to panic, there is still plenty of food for everyone, that might not be what was on the original menu for that day.
Payne explains, “We don’t want to scare parents that way, but just make them realize that we have to make changes because what we planned to serve, we had to make adjustments and serve other things to. the place.
Despite the challenges, schools are doing everything possible to ensure that meals are provided to students as promised.
Payne says that right now, they’re not at the point where parents should feel the need to start making breakfast for their kids.
HCS believes that the fall break next week will leave more time for grocery shopping in schools.
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