COVID-19 Working Paper: Filling the Pandemic Meal Gap: Disruptions to Child Nutrition Programs and Expansion of Free Meal Sites in the Early Months of the Pandemic [open pdf - 1018KB]
From the Abstract: "The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic struck the United States abruptly and unexpectedly, forcing the closure of schools and childcare providers nationwide beginning in March 2020. These closures disrupted the provision of meals to children through the largest of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) child nutrition programs. In response, USDA issued a series of waivers, as allowed by law, to facilitate the continued provision of meals to children while prioritizing the health and safety of communities. This working paper assesses the extent to which the existing child nutrition infrastructure was able to rapidly adapt to meet the needs of children in the immediate aftermath of the unforeseen crises. It documents disruptions in the provision of meals through the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), School Breakfast Program (SBP), and Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) from March through May 2020, and it examines the extent to which waivers allowing greater flexibility in their implementation and the expansion of free meal sites helped to compensate for these disruptions."
COVID-19 Working Paper AP-093; Coronavirus Disease 2019 Working Paper AP-093
U.S. Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service: https://www.ers.usda.gov/