Hoeven: USDA Extends School Meal Flexibilities for Students Through 2022

WASHINGTON – Senator John Hoeven, Ranking Member of the Senate Agriculture Appropriations Committee and a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, today issued the following statement after the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced it will provide meals to all students at no cost and extend flexibilities on sodium, whole grains and milk through June 2022.

“The flexibilities announced by USDA today will help schools in North Dakota provide meals to all students at no cost and ensure children have access to healthy and nutritious meals to help them focus on their school work,” said Hoeven. 

In addition to the announcement to provide meals at no cost, USDA also extended key flexibilities regarding sodium, whole grains, and milk so that school nutrition professionals are able to continue to provide quality meals that fit the need of students. Further, the USDA extended meal pattern flexibility by permitting curbside meal pick-up services for distance learners as well as ensuring flexibility for students learning in-person through the 2021-2022 school year.

Today’s announcement was made available under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) as extended by the Continuing Appropriations Act, 2021, passed by Congress in September of 2020.