Avian influenza’s impact on the egg and turkey industries is going to have a subsequent effect on the meals served at U.S. schools in the fall.
As the virus has hit turkey and layer flocks, supplies are limited. Government agencies and food companies are alerting school districts of the shortages.
According to a report from Fox 59, the Department of Education has sent letters to school districts that use USDA vendors that “Certain turkey and egg products may not be plentiful this upcoming school year. As a result, USDA’s vendors do not have sufficient quantities to offer USDA Foods program given short supplies.
Jill Overton, food services director for Indiana’s Franklin Community Schools, said the school district received a letter from Jennie-O Turkey Store, informing that it would need to cap the amount of product that was provided to the school.
Michael Foods has also notified Overton of the short supply. The company indicated it would have to limit the amount of egg products it is producing for the district in the upcoming school year.
Michael Foods’ egg supply has been dramatically down after several company-owned layer farms in Nebraska were infected with avian influenza. Jennie-O Turkey Store has also suffered as a result of the virus being present in some of its Minnesota turkey farms. Both companies have had to make decisions to lay off employees as a result of the outbreaks.
Bookmark WATTAgNet’s avian influenza update page for the current news and analysis on avian influenza and its impact on the poultry industry.