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CNP Director: Food shortage in Alabama schools is a growing concern


ATHENS, Alabama – Food delivery shortages to Alabama schools worry the state director of the infant nutrition program for districts.

“There is a shortage of products to be able to pick up the truck and take it to schools, then there is a shortage of those who put it on the reader, then of the drivers who deliver it to schools,” Angelice Lowe, principal of the CNP. noted.

The good news for students in northern Alabama is that there are no widespread reports of missed meals, but there are local concerns as the school year unfolds.

“These are just stressful times,” said Tandy Blackwell, director of CNP Athens. “Every week, we hope to receive trucks (food distributors). We are hopeful. We try to plan ahead as much as we can. But even still, we have to make replacements.

This cuts down on conventional food options and, in some cases, utensils, for those who eat in the cafeteria queues.

“One week the forks were out,” Blackwell said. “One week, it was plateaus.

“I wake up at night just worrying about making sure we’re able to provide some kind of meal for our kids,” Lowe said.

Lowe said she has overseen supply issues in the past, but not with truck drivers, food supply and labor in all aspects of the state’s school food industry. .

“As long as we have a public health crisis, I don’t foresee an end to this problem,” Lowe said. “We need to bring the workforce back to where it was before COVID.”

Lowe says the state is waiting for $ 1.5 billion in aid from the US Department of Agriculture to alleviate the costs of supply chain problems statewide.