Friday, November 30, 2007

Donate to your Local Food Bank

An article in today's New York Times (Food Banks, In a Squeeze, Tighten Belts, by Katie Zezima) highlights the severe shortages that food banks all over the country currently are facing.

Ross Fraser, a spokesman for America’s Second Harvest, which distributes more than two billion pounds of donated food and grocery products annually, said the shortages at food banks were the worst the organization had seen in 26 years.

“Suddenly it’s on everyone’s radar,” Mr. Fraser said. “Food banks are calling us and saying, ‘My God, we have to get food.’”

Why is this happening? According to the article, there is an unusual combination of factors: rising demand, a sharp drop in federal supplies of excess farm products, and tighter inventory controls that are leaving supermarkets and other retailers with less food to donate.

So, if you are looking for a place to direct your year-end giving, think about your local food bank! Or you could give to a national organization, like America's Second Harvest or Mazon: A Jewish Response to Hunger.

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