Southern and southwestern States have higher per capita participation in School Breakfast Program
In fiscal year 2014, 13.6 million students participated in USDA’s School Breakfast Program (SBP) on an average school day, with 85 percent of participants receiving the meals for free or at a reduced price. On a per-capita basis, this translates into 4.2 SBP participants per 100 U.S. residents. Per-capita participation in the SBP ranged from 1.6 participants per 100 residents in New Hampshire to 7.1 per 100 residents in New Mexico and West Virginia. Per-capita participation reflects both the percentage of the population that are enrolled in schools offering USDA meals, as well as the proportion of those students who take school breakfast. For example, in Texas, where per-capita participation is 6.9 participants per 100 residents, school-aged children in schools offering USDA meals make up 19 percent of the population, and 35 percent of those students participate in the SBP. New Hampshire’s lower rate reflects a low percentage of residents that are of school age (14 percent) and a lower rate of children participating in the program (11 percent of students). This map is from ERS’s Food Environment Atlas.