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USDA seeking partners for Summer Food Service Program

Press release

For immediate release: April 15, 2024

Baton Rouge, La. – For many families whose children receive free or reduced breakfast and lunch during the school year, summer can be a time of food insecurity. To combat this problem, each year the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) participates in the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) in collaboration with the Louisiana Department of Education (LDOE) and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). The program, which helps ensure that children continue to receive nutritious meals when school is not in session, is currently seeking statewide partners for this year’s program.

The program’s partner organizations, which include schools, local government agencies, camps, and faith-based and other non-profit community organizations, are the backbone of the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP). Participating partners operate summer meal sites all over the state, becoming part of a network of safe and supervised settings - including schools, parks, community centers, libraries, churches, camps, and migrant centers - where children can receive meals and snacks to eat on-site or on the go.

“Without this program, many children will go hungry this summer, and that’s the bottom line,” said Commissioner of the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry Mike Strain, DVM. “It’s important that we start identifying partner organizations now so that we don’t have a time gap where these children don’t have access to a meal when schools let out for the summer. The school systems play a part, and if the schools choose not to do it, then other government entities in the parish can do it. If they choose not to do it, then the private nonprofits can do it.”

The USDA funds the program, the LDOE approves the partner organizations, and the LDAF stores and distributes the food allocated by the USDA.

Interested parties can read more about the process and complete an application at Food distribution | Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry ( . The deadline to submit all required forms is May 17, 2024.


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Contact info

Jennifer Finley, Press Secretary
Megan Moore, Public Information Director