Nationally, 37 million Americans receive some sort of emergency food assistance, and that number has increased 46 percent in the last four years. Given the state of the U.S. economy, the recent news of the growing number of those losing their jobs and uncertainty in Congress about extending jobless benefits, we may be facing something bordering an epidemic of hungry, needy families.
Here in California, food banks are currently moving 100 pounds of surplus or unmarketable fresh fruits and vegetables each year from farmers to needy families. The objective is to get to 200 pounds per year, and I’m chairing a state Board of Food and Agriculture initiative to double the current amount of food going from farmers to needy families. Check out this California Farmer article on how we plan to get there.
And in the spirit of the holidays, The San Diego Union-Tribune (our client) is leading an aggressive food drive campaign to collect 1 million pounds of food. Chicken of the Sea, another client of ours, helped kick start that campaign with a 1,000-pound product contribution. Here’s how you can help: http://bit.ly/hKh083.