ARLINGTON, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) –  The traditional Thanksgiving meal at Arlington schools is off the menu this year as districts continue to try to navigate shortages caused by supply chain problems.

Turkey wasn’t going to be available for the annual feast. Green beans were an issue recently too, with just eight cases delivered after an order of 300.

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Plastic trays and plastic utensils are hard to come by. The district also has 167 open positions in food services, and recently increased starting pay to try to attract more employees.

The challenges started in August but have increased as the school year has gone on, according to David Lewis, the director of food and nutrition for the district.

“We have lots of ghost shipments from our warehouse, confirmed shipment, confirmed scheduled date of delivery, and no truck will show,” he said.

The district is still providing breakfast and lunch daily, and Lewis said he doesn’t anticipate a time when they won’t be able to provide the 50,000 meals served daily at schools.

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“We will make sure every student who wants a meal, has a meal,” he said.

It has forced menu changes, and fewer menu items. The lack of employees has forced AISD to scale back some service options like breakfast kiosks throughout school buildings.

Costs are also up. Lewis said food costs are running above the 38-percent of the department budget they usually require.

 

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