The U.S. Department of Agriculture has extended the free meals for children program through the end of the year or until funding runs out.
Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced Monday that the USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service will extend the Summer Food Service Program and the Seamless Summer Option.
“As our nation reopens and people return to work, it remains critical our children continue to receive safe, healthy, and nutritious food. During the COVID-19 pandemic, USDA has provided an unprecedented amount of flexibilities to help schools feed kids through the school meal programs, and today, we are also extending summer meal program flexibilities for as long as we can, legally and financially,” Perdue said.
The Texas Department of Agriculture is waiting on additional guidance from USDA before releasing implementation information.
The USDA extension was announced on the same day that Gov. Greg Abbott announced Texas will be extending the Emergency Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program through September.
“Texas will continue to ensure access to nutritious meals as we mitigate the spread of COVID-19,” said Abbott. “This emergency SNAP extension will help Texans provide healthy food for their families.”
Over 972,000 Texas SNAP households will receive the additional amount on their Lone Star Card by Sept. 15.
SNAP, administered by Texas Health and Human Services Commission, is a federal program that provides food assistance and helps approximately 1.4 million eligible low-income families and individuals in Texas.