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Sorghum Joins WIC National Food Package: USCP Celebrates Enhanced Nutrition Accessibility for Children in Expanded Offerings

LUBBOCK, TX – The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently announced the finalized updates to the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) to better reflect dietary and cultural preferences of its participants. Additions include sorghum, marking a significant milestone in the nutritional landscape for American children and families.

The WIC program plays a critical role in ensuring access to nutritious foods for low-income pregnant, postpartum and breastfeeding women, as well as infants and children up to the age of five. With the addition of sorghum to the expanded whole grain options for the national list of approved foods, participants will now have access to the versatile and nutrient-rich grain.

The Sorghum Checkoff remains committed to advancing the understanding and utilization of sorghum as The Resource Conserving Crop® that contributes to agricultural diversity and food security. The inclusion of sorghum in the updated national WIC food package is expected to benefit over 6.6 million mothers, infants and children across the United States.

“This expansion will provide mothers and babies with nutrients essential for their growth and development. Due to its versatility, sorghum can be enjoyed in a variety of ways to accommodate food preferences, developmental stages and dietary patterns of mothers and children. Sorghum’s inclusion in expanded whole grain offerings for the updated national WIC food package highlights its significance as a nutrient-rich grain option reflective of the global foodways enjoyed in kitchens across the country,” Sorghum Checkoff Director of Nutrition & Food Innovation, Lanier Dabruzzi, MS, RD, LD, said.

Last year, the Sorghum Checkoff submitted formal comments for consideration as the Food and Nutrition Service revised and updated the food package. This announcement reflects a culmination of efforts to promote sorghum as a versatile and nutrient-rich grain suitable for inclusion in public nutrition programs.

Sorghum, a naturally gluten-free whole grain, is a robust source of nutrition, providing  nutrients such as fiber, plant-based protein and antioxidants. Its recognition as a whole grain option by the WIC program aligns with USCP’s mission to promote the nutritional advantages of sorghum and support its integration into various food programs and initiatives. For additional information, including farm-to-school curriculum and kid-friendly recipes, please visit SorghumCheckoff.com/educators/.

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