Fedding India Logo Woman serving meals to children(girls) with a smile. Daily Feeding Program by Feeding India at Mahesh Foundation, Belgavi.
Feeding India | June 7, 2024 | 3 min(s) read
Bridging the Nutritional Gap: The Impact of India’s Mid Day Meal Scheme and Feeding India’s Daily Feeding Program

India’s Mid Day Meal Scheme, now known as PM Poshan Scheme, can be considered as a transformative initiative in addressing hunger, malnutrition, and even educational disparities among school going children. Its origins can be traced before independence, however,its official nationwide launch in 1995 by the Government of India, under Prime Minister P.V. Narasimha Rao.

Initially launched as a pilot program in Tamil Nadu in 1955 by then Chief Minister K. Kamaraj, the scheme aimed to enhance children’s nutritional status and boost school attendance rates. Its success in Tamil Nadu led to its expansion across India, recognized by the central government for its immense potential. Today it is operational in nearly all states and union territories, the Mid Day Meal Scheme has become one of the world’s largest school feeding programs, catering to the nutritional needs of millions of school going students nationwide.

However, the Mid Day Meal Scheme is limited to government and government-aided schools only. And thus, leaving out a significant portion of the student population. India has around 15 lakh schools, with approximately 26 crore school going students enrolled. Of these, around 14 crore students attend government schools, while around 12 crore attend private schools. It’s important to note that many of these private schools lack the resources or financial means to provide meals to their students, particularly those which can be considered to be  lower income private schools.

The government’s Mid Day Meal Scheme has undoubtedly made significant strides in ensuring that no child goes hungry. However, the scale of the challenge of malnutrition and hunger is vast, and no single entity can solve it alone. And hence, civil society and organizations like Feeding India play a crucial role in addressing the remaining gaps and ensuring that every child receives the nutrition they need to grow and thrive.

The Daily Feeding Program is one of Feeding India’s flagship programmes. It is an initiative that provides nutritious meals to students on a daily basis throughout the school year. This effort ensures that children receive consistent access to nutritious food, enabling them to focus on their studies without the distraction of hunger. Under this program, Feeding India has served more than 4.3 crore meals till date and serves more than 1.2 lakh meals daily. 

Feeding India’s Daily Feeding Program has had a significant impact on the lives of the children it serves. By providing a consistent source of nutrition, the program helps to improve the overall health and well-being of students, reducing the risk of malnutrition and related health issues. The program not only improves their physical health, but also has a profound impact on their cognitive development. Additionally, the program has a positive effect on school attendance and academic performance. When children are well-nourished and not constantly distracted by hunger, they are better able to concentrate in class, participate in learning activities, and retain information better. This, in turn, leads to improved academic outcomes and increased chances of success in the future.

While this program offers immediate benefits, it has great potential for long-term gains that go beyond individual accomplishments. By fostering improved nutrition and cognitive development during formative years, it sets the stage for enhanced academic and educational achievements. This, in turn, translates into higher overall earnings and increased productivity, thereby fueling economic growth while reducing poverty and inequality.

Through these efforts Feeding India is complementing the work of the government’s Mid day meal scheme and ensuring that no child is deprived of a wholesome nutritious meal and the opportunity to learn and grow.

Support our mission to empower more children and create a brighter future for India. Visit Feeding India’s Website to learn more and get involved. Together, we can make a lasting impact!

Author: Anoushka Sethia


Mid-Day Meal Scheme: Enhancing Nutrition & Education for School Children 2023

India: number of enrolled students by school type | Statista

Analyzing the Education Landscape in India: School Numbers, Enrolment & Teacher Distribution (2023).

What to Know about India’s Mid-Day Meal Scheme – The Borgen Project

Impact of Mid Day Meal on Enrollment, Attendance and Retention Rate of Primary School Children in Jalpaiguri District, West Bengal

Food for Thought: Evaluating the Impact of India’s Mid-Day Meal Program on Educational Attainment

Impact of Mid Day Meal on Enrollment, Attendance and Retention of Primary School Children

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Impact of Mid-Day Meal (MDM) Programme on Attendance of Primary School Children in Rani Area of Kamrup ® District, Assam

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