USDA Announces New Hunger-Relief Investments
Earlier this week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced a significant shift that will have tremendous impact for millions of neighbors facing hunger. The White House and USDA announced on Sept. 14 nearly $1.5 billion in additional funding for emergency food assistance, which will help alleviate supply shortages in the nation’s charitable food system.
This urgently needed investment toward food security will help ensure the Feeding America nationwide network can support people facing hunger—a reality that persists in every community across the U.S.
“This is a powerful step in the fight against hunger,” said Feeding America CEO Claire Babineaux-Fontenot. “We need more bold action like this to ensure the tens of millions of neighbors, co-workers, classmates and friends facing hunger get the food and resources they need to thrive.” (You can read more of Claire’s remarks in Feeding America’s statement on FeedingAmerica.org.)
Food banks, pantries and other charitable food assistance programs have been providing a record response during the COVID-19 pandemic, an effort that would not have been possible without USDA food purchases boosted by COVID-19 recovery funding from Congress. As the demand for food assistance remains well above pre-pandemic levels, a perfect storm of supply chain disruptions, decreased food donations, increased food purchase and transportation costs, and continued high demand have left food banks struggling to keep shelves and coolers stocked.
“Almost immediately in 2021 after the incredible support from USDA during the pandemic, we experienced the TEFAP ‘cliff’ and a dramatic decrease in food resources. We are grateful that USDA has been responsive to the continuing demand at our food bank, and around the country, and has directed these much needed resources for our partner agencies and the communities of need we serve,” Cynthia Kirkhart, CEO of Facing Hunger Food Bank stated in response to this announcement.
This nearly $1.5 billion in funding for USDA food purchases will help support people facing hunger so they are not forced to make the impossible choice between buying groceries and paying for necessities like medicine, utilities or childcare.
Donor Relations Officer
Facing Hunger Foodbank
1327 7th Ave. Huntington, WV 25701
P: 304.523.6029 ext. 28