Reduction in USDA & Produce Food Donations
The Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona and its five branch food banks are experiencing a reduction in USDA food items and produce donations this year. The Food Bank’s inventory is presently over a million pounds less than last year at this time. “We are highly concerned about the holiday season”, indicated Bill Carnegie, Food Bank CEO, “this is a time of extremely high demand due to the economy and we have less to give”, he added.
Delivery of the USDA food items has slowed due to reductions in spending by the federal government. Lower produce donations are a result of freezing temperatures experienced by farmers in Mexico earlier this year and farmers now, are just beginning to recover.
The demand for help from families in Southern Arizona continues to rise. In 2007, the Food Bank was assisting about 98,000 men, women and children each month, today the number in need has risen to nearly 240,000.
“This is a perfect storm scenario for the Community Food Bank, with increasing numbers of people in need and reductions in donations of money and food”, Carnegie added.
For those who wish to help, log onto www.communityfoodbank.org or call (520) 622-0525 to make a donation, learn how to conduct a food drive or volunteer.
For more information, contact Bill Carnegie at (520) 622-0525.