Friday, November 03, 2017

Billy Long: We need to put more beef in school lunches

(From Seventh District Congressman Billy Long)

Each day, over 30 million students eat school lunches, which is nearly 5 billion lunches annually. Ensuring they have access to a healthy lunch is vital to these students’ health and success. There have been numerous efforts made at the federal, state and local levels to encourage not only balanced eating, but having foods included that are locally grown.

At the federal level there is a program through the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) called the Farm to School Program. This program encourages schools across the country to include local foods in the National School Lunch Program, which provides well-balanced meals at little to no cost to students who cannot afford them. The Farm to School Program helps increase access to locally grown food through a variety of ways, including grants and technical assistance.

According to the 2015 USDA’s Farm to School Census, more than 42,000 schools brought local farm products to school benefiting over 23 million children. As this program continues, more and more schools are jumping on board. Of the schools surveyed, an additional 16 percent said they plan to participate in the Farm to School Program or related activities in the future.

In Missouri, that proportion is 43 percent. In 2015, more than $13 million was invested in local food throughout the state, with each district spending 3 percent of its budget on local products. The leading local foods were fruits, vegetables and milk.

However, Missouri did more on a state level to advance this initiative. It has a similar program called Missouri Farm to School to help school districts throughout the state connect with local farmers. Not only does it aim to connect schools and farmers, it also has a website called AgriMissouri Classifieds that helps better connect those schools with local farmers. This website allows both the schools and farmers to enter products they are looking for, display the prices of products they have available and where they are distributing them.

Not only does the Missouri Farm to School Program aim to connect, it also has a grant program for Missouri businesses to process locally grown products for schools. This grant money covers resources including coolers, freezers, washing, bagging and packing equipment as well as professional services.

But Missouri is not stopping there. Just recently the Missouri Department of Agriculture, the Missouri Beef Industry Council, the Southwest Missouri Cattlemen’s Association and Opaa Food Management teamed up with the Mount Vernon School District to take part in the pilot program, MO Beef for MO Kids. This program works to get more meat into school lunches with the help of local cattlemen. Some estimates show that one out of 10 school lunches have no beef component. Missouri schools cannot afford local products high in protein – like meat and poultry – compared to other locally produced products. This program wants to change that. It aims to increase options, education and research in this area.

Missouri currently ranks third in the U.S. in cattle production with southwest Missouri producing the most beef cattle in the state. The three leading counties for beef production are Lawrence, Polk and Barry, all three of which are in Missouri’s 7th Congressional District.

The agriculture industry affects every single person and is the backbone of the 7th District, Missouri and the U.S. Programs like these are proof of that. I will continue to do my part in Washington to make sure these people have as little red tape as possible to ensure they can do their job.


Anonymous said...

So, in other words, you aren't doing anything to change what is already working? You go Billy Blob!! Maybe you should try eating some of the buffets here in Missouri instead of spending our money to haul your fat a$$ to Las Vegas for your ALEC meetings, free buffets and padding your bank account with the lobbyists money. The ignorant "party before country" republicans that keep voting for you need to wake up and smell the BS you are shoveling.

Never get between a hog and his feed said...

Shouldn't that beef be Waygu 390 days dry aged after being massaged by an artisan and cooked to perfection with a $50.00 baked potato? Doesn't it need to bought by fat cat lobbyists campaign contribution and expensed in Veg@$$?

Doesn't that make it taste like it should?


Anonymous said...

This guy better cut down on his beef intake and start eating salads. He looks like he is getting ready to split open or keel over.
#JustSayNo #PutDownTheFork #PushAwayFromTheTable

Anonymous said...

#HowBigHisShirtcollar #LotsaBellyWhenHeBelliesUp

Anonymous said...

Typical Libs....criticizing everyone else for comments they make. Then, the publicly fat shame a politician. Thought you people were the super sensitive type? Better treatment of others, standing up for one another, acceptance, etc. Ha! You repeatedly make my point on this blog. Take a good look in the mirror.
#yourebetterthanthat #wellmaybenot #dountoothers #hypocrisy

Anonymous said...

812, you have a point, but in all fairness a Con would then say you are a Snowflake and tell you to man up.

Anonymous said...

The average Billy Long voter probably feeds their family for a week for less than one of Billy Long's expensive Las Vegas casino steak diners.

The fact that Billy Long's BMI looks to be above 25 has nothing to do with that observation.

Whether or not hundreds of children go to bed hungry in his congressional district.


Anonymous said...

The truth is, one of these days Billy's fat is going to crowd his heart to the point that he dies.

Anonymous said...

@ 8:12 - "alt right" or "republican" or "conservative" is synonymous with hypocrite. Blobby Long fat shames himself every time he runs to Vegas on your dime to meet with his lobbyists and hit the buffets. Your idea of treating others better is taking away their health care and giving tax breaks to the rich. The only person you stand up for better have an "R" beside their name and better be white or you don't care what happens to them. You are spending too much time defending your "party before country" Republican's immoral and unethical behavior with your "alternative facts" and "alternative reality". Now go put your tinfoil hat back on and go stare at the sun some more or find something shiny to play with.

Anonymous said...

10:35....seems you are the typical blind fool who deliberately misinterprets the words of others in a weak attempt to paint a false narrative. Never once did I defend excessive spending, taking away of healthcare or tax breaks for the see I, unlike you, do not identify with either party as it blinds you to reality. You obviously are filled with hate and have no compassion for others. Name calling is low hanging fruut....people who resort to making fun of others are absent of intellect and simply cannot articulate their thoughts, thereby becomi g frustrates and lashing out. It's okay, better days are to come. Work a little harder and pull yourself out of whatever situation you are in.

Anonymous said...

11:45.....nice try hypocrite, but your dishonesty and republican upbringing are ringing true. Try lying to someone else. You are the one that started with your "typical libs" remark and, since it is printed above, try giving a different meaning to the hatred you have for anyone else that doesn't agree with you. I follow independent thought and can see the hypocrisy of both sides but I will speak out when it is driving this country into the ditch. Acting blind to the parties immoral, self confessed "alternative facts" ramblings is not going to make anything better. Speaking of working, I have since I was 12 years old and I am doing fine. While you are at it, try proof reading your material before posting. You are welcome.

Anonymous said...

7:33...just give up already. YOUR attack and liberal rhetoric gave you away early. Go ahead, don't back down least be true to the hatred you spewed. Believe what you want...I call repub b.s. when I see it too and am no fan of Long, quite the comtrary. Again, reading comprehension is a great thing. You should work on these skills. Your left wing nonsense in the initial post shows you are totally incapable of independent thought. But thats it, keep backtracking and proving my point. You definitely didnt disappoint. :)

Anonymous said...

Lol....give it up 7:33, you've been schooled!

Anonymous said...

1:03.....just give up? Sounds like the republican thing to do. Your reich wing rhetoric and belief in all alternative facts just show how little you do think for yourself. You talk about reading comprehension yet you can't keep a sentence in line. You say to give up then you say, go ahead, don't back down now. Typical republican. Which way is the wind blowing? Again, try proof reading your own garbage. Too many mistakes show your actual level of education....or is it the lack of quality education? Maybe your problem is you know you do disappoint. 'nuff said.

Anonymous said...

Lol...sorry you are so butt hurt. Just keeepppp going. Your paragraph is so incoherent that no one can even understand what you mean. But then again your education level is obvious in your poor wording and sentence structure. Try an original thought once awhile and quit drinking the kool aid. You simply are simply a simpleton bigger and I've wasted enough time on you. Good day!