Supply chain disruptions and worker shortages impact every industry during the pandemic, and students returning to schools are at risk of missing a key meal due to these issues.
Across the country, food deliveries to many schools have been delayed. Some schools in Mid-Michigan face the same issues.
Dawn Pully is the Food Service Director for Bendle Public Schools.
“It might change the menu, but that doesn’t mean we couldn’t serve lunch,” Pully said.
She said her staff worked a lot of overtime to make sure students got their lunch.
“We use every distributor we can to find things. Go to the grocery store, go to Gordon, order from a second vendor,” Pully said.
Bendle Public Schools are not alone. Diane Golzynski, director of health and nutrition services at the Michigan Department of Education, said schools across the state were feeling the pinch.
“Two weeks ago we got a call from our distributors saying they weren’t able to deliver food to schools at all that week because they didn’t have food in their warehouse. “said Golzynski.
Golzynski said there was a shortage of workers at all levels of the food supply chain.
“It’s probably going to get worse before it gets better. Most of the stocks that could be built up in the warehouses are now exhausted. see a lot of relief for the immediate future, ”Golzynski said.
Golzynski said that despite the shortage, school meals will never be marked absent.
“It might not be what’s on the menu, it might not be what they wanted that day, but there will be food everyday that we can serve the kids.” , Golzynski said.
In the meantime, Pully asks the parents to be understanding. She said it took her staff hours and hours to do a job that took 30 minutes before.
She wants parents to know that every effort is made to ensure that students get what they want.
“Talk to your kids and if you don’t get barbecue sauce, it’s not because we didn’t order it. We tried,” Pully said.