New York State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball announced last week that applications will now be open for a reimbursement of 30% for the New York State Initiative for the 2021-2022 school year. The initiative will increase the reimbursement that schools receive for lunches from only 5.9 cents per meal to now 25 cents for any school district that purchases at least 30% of its ingredients from New York State Farms.
“The 30% NYS Initiative is a key part of New York State’s goal to get more fresh, local, New York foods on tables across the state. Here at the Department, we are excited to be taking the lead on the program this year and look forward to working closely with school food authorities to get more New York products to New York kids. By increasing reimbursement for school food authorities that use at least 30% New York products in their lunches, we are supporting our farmers, our schools, and our students – a win-win-win for all. I encourage eligible schools to apply for the 2021-2022 program and to consider taking part in this great initiative moving forward.” Commissioner Ball said.
The law, originally passed back in 2018 was updated in this year’s current state budget to provide school authorities with increased state reimbursement for the purchase of New York State food products.
“The 30% NYS Initiative is intended to provide healthy New York sourced food products to children as part of their lunch meal in school. When schools use food products from local sources, they are supporting local farmers and providing healthy choices for children in school meal programs, while also supporting the local economy.” The State Agriculture Department Stated.