There is no “off-season” for the nearly 15% of people in this country facing hunger. Although demand remains high all year round, many of the nation’s food banks experience a major decline in donations during the summer months. USDA programs, however, work year-round to help those affected by hunger.
Through The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP), USDA helps those in need by purchasing items for food banks and community service organizations. The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) Commodity Procurement staff coordinates with the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) to send quality, wholesome foods to these establishments. In FY 2013, AMS purchased more than 212 million pounds of food for TEFAP. Read more »
USDA employees from Rural Development and the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service assist at Harvesters, a local food bank.
USDA employees in Kansas from Rural Development and the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service recently visited the Harvesters Distribution Center in Topeka in honor of National Service Day. Harvesters is a food bank that partners with more than 600 nonprofit agencies to provide nutritious food to individuals in 26-counties in northeast Kansas and northwest Missouri. Read more »
Deputy Secretary of Agriculture Kathleen Merrigan visited Road Runner Food Bank in Albuquerque, New Mexico today, where she took a tour of the facility and helped distribute USDA foods. Merrigan highlighted the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), and the ARRA funding that Road Runner received in 2009.
The Recovery Act supported the nation’s food banks, food pantries and soup kitchens, by increasing funding to USDA’s Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP).
TEFAP helps supplement the diets of low-income Americans by providing them with emergency food and nutrition assistance at no cost. USDA makes food available to State governments, which distributes it to their emergency feeding network and their affiliates, like Road Runner.
And Road Runner didn’t just receive food through the Recovery Act, it also received TEFAP Administrative Funds, which it quickly put to use renovating and installing racking in it’s cold storage facility. Because of these renovations, Road Runner is now able to store and distribute more foods to those in need.
More information about USDA’s Recovery Act efforts is available at http://www.usda.gov/recovery. Log on to USDA’s YouTube channel to view additional ARRA project highlights, videos are available at http://www.youtube.com/usda – g/c/2A468F5AC6EBCED7
On Monday, August 17, Secretary Vilsack joined Secretary of Education Arne Duncan for a Rural Tour event in Hamlet, North Carolina. While they were there, the Secretaries had the opportunity to participate in a meal packaging service project at Richmond Community College to promote President Obama’s United We Serve summer volunteerism initiative. The event was coordinated by Stop Hunger Now, a Raleigh-based non-profit organization that has hosted similar events at area colleges, including North Carolina State, the University of North Carolina, NC Central and others. Read more »