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“It’s unclear where an average of $1.77 per meal stacks up nationwide, said Leslie Soble, who wrote a report, “Eating Behind Bars: Ending the Hidden Punishment of Food in Prison,” for prison reform group Impact Justice.

‘It isn’t specifically about the price per meal,’ Soble said, ‘it’s about what places are doing with that.’ Some prisons in other states may spend less per meal but focus on sourcing local ingredients for a lower rate, while others may be cutting costs in other ways.

‘There are places that bake all of their own bread in the kitchen and produce a better quality product for less money than it costs to purchase an ultraprocessed bread product from a big distributor,’ Soble said.”

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