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A rotten deal for schools? An assessment of states' success with the National School Lunch Program's in-kind food benefit

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  • Peterson, Cora
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    Abstract

    The National School Lunch Program (NSLP) is one of the United States' largest domestic food aid programs. The NSLP provides states with both cash and commodity foods for school meals. This research assessed the success of the school commodity program by comparing states' available annual funding to the value of foods that states actually received from 2001 to 2009. Results indicate that an in-kind food funding system is not desirable for schools; states failed to receive entitled commodity food value in most years, resulting in annual funding losses for schools of $35-87 million. Inconsistent funding inhibits schools' ability to improve meals and, ultimately, child nutrition outcomes. In light of these results, it is recommended that a cash benefit should replace the National School Lunch Program's commodity food program.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Food Policy.

    Volume (Year): 36 (2011)
    Issue (Month): 5 (October)
    Pages: 588-596

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:jfpoli:v:36:y:2011:i:5:p:588-596

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/foodpol

    Related research

    Keywords: School commodity program Child nutrition National School Lunch Program US Department of Agriculture;

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    1. John C. Beghin & Helen H. Jensen, 2008. "Farm Policies and Added Sugars in US Diets," Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) Publications 08-wp462, Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) at Iowa State University.
    2. Alston, Julian M. & Sumner, Daniel A. & Vosti, Stephen A., 2008. "Farm subsidies and obesity in the United States: National evidence and international comparisons," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(6), pages 470-479, December.
    3. Ghosh, Koel & Senauer, Benjamin, 2009. "Adequacy of Federal School Lunch Reimbursement Adjustments," Choices, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 24(3).
    4. Cora Peterson, 2009. "A comparative cost analysis of commodity foods from the U.S. Department of Agriculture in the National School Lunch Program," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 28(4), pages 626-654.
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