What is the deal with trade mitigation?

What’s the deal with trade mitigation?

The Foodbank receives agricultural surpluses resulting from the Trump Administration’s $1.4 billion Food Purchase and Distribution Program. Here’s what we do with it.

Written by: Emily Gallion, Grant & Advocacy Manger and Caitlyn McIntosh, Development Manager

Hunger relief programs nationwide are familiar with The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP), which provides a significant amount of food to charitable programs. However, many people are unfamiliar with the program, how it supports food assistance programs, and what impact current events have on the availability of food. We hope the following post will shed some light on the role of TEFAP in The Foodbank’s operations.

In 2018, the Trump administration and the United States Department of Agriculture launched a trade mitigation plan to help farmers affected by trade tariffs enforced by China. This package falls under TEFAP, a larger federal program that purchases unsold food and redistributes it to food assistance programs. This program was launched in 1981 to compensate farmers for agricultural surpluses that were going unsold.

TEFAP food is allocated based upon the number of people living below the poverty line in each state, then sent to food banks, which in turn distribute the product to agencies such as soup kitchens, shelters, and food pantries. Because TEFAP is a federal program, there are special restrictions on which agencies can receive this food. These restrictions vary by state. In Ohio, agencies must attend a civil rights training and complete food safety training, and over half of the population they serve must live at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty limit.

While the purpose of the program is to provide support to American farmers, it also provides a significant portion of The Foodbank’s food. In fiscal year 2019, TEFAP product accounted for 22 percent of all food we distributed.

When the 2018 trade mitigation program was first implemented, it designated $1.2 billion to purchase apples, pork, potatoes, and dairy products. On May 2019, those funds were increased to $1.4 billion for the current fiscal year. The Foodbank and other food banks nationwide are receiving additional TEFAP product as a result. Though TEFAP food is just one of the ways we receive our product, trade mitigation has had a significant impact on the types and amount of food we distribute. 

Food we receive through this program is often fresh produce, protein product, and other healthy foods, such as beans and rice. Last year, we received especially high quantities of beans, pork, apples, peanut butter, and fresh milk. In fiscal year 2019, The Foodbank, Inc. distributed over 16 million pounds of food, which was 25 percent more than the previous year. (Many factors outside of TEFAP allocations play a hand in this statistic, including activity related to the Memorial Day tornado outbreak.)

Below is a graph depicting the increase in TEFAP food received by The Foodbank, Inc. before and after the mitigation package was launched. This data reflects all TEFAP food designated as “bonus/other” by our inventory system, which includes some product that is not purchased through trade mitigation, but trade mitigation is ultimately responsible for the upward trend. Despite the fact that we are just over halfway through our fiscal year, we have received almost as much food in this category as last year.

 

*FY20 data reflects food received through mid-January

The trade mitigation program provides a bounty of fresh food, especially high-demand products such as fresh meat. However, the influx of perishable food can pose unique challenges, especially when we receive large quantities of a single product, such as the over 61,000 pounds of garbanzo beans we received this fall.

Turning over redundant loads of product can be difficult, so we have to find solutions to encourage our agencies to pick up trade mitigation product or find additional storage. The increase in trade mitigation product is one of the driving reasons we are currently ordering more shelving. We have also had success with more creative methods of distribution with our own direct service programs, especially our on-site Drive Thru.

The Foodbank’s Drive Thru opened Summer 2018 with funding from Dayton Power and Light. The format has several advantages. First and foremost, it enables clients with mobility issues to obtain food without having to leave their vehicles or carry heavy boxes. We also envisioned it as a way for clients who have already received their maximum allotment from other pantries in our network, which often place limits on the number of times a household can visit in a month.

However, because our Drive Thru is built into our warehouse, it has also proven an important mechanism for distributing products we receive in large quantities. The Drive Thru has become an integral part of our hunger relief strategy. Last fiscal year, the Drive Thru had an attendance of 33,463 people. The Drive Thru was especially critical to our response to the recent tornado outbreak: our monthly attendance reached an all time high of 9,085 people served in June, the month following the disaster – over 5,000 greater than the previous month.

The USDA has not announced a trade mitigation plan for the next fiscal year. As an emergency relief organization, we are always preparing for an ever changing environment and will remain alert to adapt to future changes.

 


The Foodbank, Inc., The Dayton Foundation, and UnitedHealthcare to Unveil New Food Distribution Truck

 

The Foodbank, Inc., The Dayton Foundation, and UnitedHealthcare to Unveil New Food Distribution Truck

 

Dayton, OH –  (February 3, 2020): On Wednesday, February 5th members of the press are invited to attend the formal unveiling of a new Foodbank truck, followed by a mobile farmer’s market open to anyone in need.

Sponsored by The Dayton Foundation and UnitedHealthcare, the new truck will aid The Foodbank in distributing fresh, healthy foods across 27 different sites in Montgomery, Greene, and Preble counties. After a formal ribbon cutting ceremony, the event will open up to the community for a heart healthy food distribution with the American Heart Association.

The new truck is part of a $500,000 grant UnitedHealthcare gave last year to the Ohio Association of Foodbanks. Through this grant, food banks throughout Ohio now have new refrigeration units or new trucks to deliver the public increased access to fresh food.

“The Dayton Foundation is proud to support The Foodbank’s efforts to feed the hungry in Greater Dayton and keep edible food out of the landfill through food rescue and local farm fresh produce gleaning,” said Michael M. Parks, president of The Dayton Foundation.

 

When:                                      Wednesday, February 5, 2020

                                                  Formal Unveiling 9:15 a.m.

                                                  Mobile Farmer’s Market 10:00-11:00 a.m.

 

Where:                                     Memorial United Church of Christ

                                                  2338 E 5th St.

                                                  Dayton, OH 45403

 

Interviews Available:              Lee Lauren Truesdale, The Foodbank, Inc., Chief Development Officer

                                                 Joree Novotny, Ohio Association of Food Banks, Director of External Affairs

                                                 Michael Roaldi, UnitedHealthcare Community Plan of Ohio, CEO

 

Photos Available:                  Truck unveiling and ribbon cutting

                                                Food distribution


Encouraging Someone to Help Others

Encouraging Someone to Help Others

An Interview with Megan Broom

Written By: Aniqa Ahmed, Advocacy Intern of The Foodbank, Inc.

Megan Broom began volunteering at The Foodbank, Inc. in 2018 as part of a school project that helped fulfill a 25 hour volunteer credit requirement.  One year and over 100 hours later, Megan is still giving her time by helping out in the warehouse and for off-site events. What stood out to Megan there was a real feeling of “good” surrounding the culture of the organization. When she says that, she not only means the act of community service, but also that the staff and volunteers are welcoming, encouraging, and knowledgeable, noting, “No organization is perfect, but it’s hard to find flaws in their operation.”

Growing up in the middle-class suburb of Kettering, Megan was fortunate enough to have an amazing support system where food insecurity had never been an issue. However, she was encouraged to help someone who needed a meal. In her own words, Megan believes, “Eating together builds trust. Cooking together creates bonds. I’m happy to have spent time with an organization which helps to provide the means to such outcomes.”

Megan is currently working for Patchwork Gardens, a local chemical-free farm in Trotwood. She has always been interested in learning how to grow her own food and what it takes to do so on a larger scale. When Megan first started volunteering with The Foodbank, Inc., she was informed that Patchwork Gardens donates excess produce to The Foodbank, Inc. She then started volunteering on the farm and was hired on for the 2019 growing season.  She states, “The connection between the two organizations means a great deal to me,” thus influencing her decision to take the position at Patchwork Gardens.

Megan exclaims, “I don’t believe people can be expected to perform if they are hungry – children can’t learn; adults can’t work. So, for me, The Foodbank, Inc. is an example of the community helping itself to thrive.”

September is Hunger Action Month, Feeding America’s nationwide network of food banks’ awareness campaign designed to mobilize the public to take action on the issue of hunger. Hunger is a reality for 1 in 6 of our Miami Valley neighbors. Together, we can end hunger one helping at a time. Every action counts, so visit us on social media @thefoodbankinc to learn how you can get started.

 

 

 


The Foodbank to Unveil New Composter

The Foodbank to Unveil New Food Waste Project on 11/20/19

 

The Foodbank, Inc. invites the media to an unveiling event on Wednesday, November 20, 2019 at 2 pm in the Urban Garden located at The Foodbank.

The Foodbank, Inc. is committed to reducing food waste and lowering carbon footprint, and this new technology is a large step in that direction. It will also be used as an educational tool for the community on how to dispose of food waste and repurposing it in an eco-friendly manner. This project was made possible through funding from the Ohio EPA, The Kroger Foundation. Tom Greene, President and CEO of Greene Tool Systems, will provide photography of the unveiling.

 

Speakers: Michelle L. Riley, The Foodbank, Inc.

Angel Arroyo-Rodriguez, Ohio EPA

Van Calvez, Green Mountain Technologies

 

Where:                                     The Foodbank, Inc., in the fenced-in garden area

56 Armor Place

Dayton, OH 45417

 

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The Foodbank relieves hunger in the community through a network of partner agencies by acquiring and distributing food. Food and related supplies are distributed to a network of pantries, community kitchens, shelters and other charitable programs, all of which support the health and development of food insecure individuals in the Miami Valley. Through our over 100 member agencies, The Foodbank distributed over 16 million pounds of food last year. There are 116,720 food insecure individuals in our area, 33,770 of which are children.

 


Local Businesses Create Sculptures out of Canned Goods

 

Local Businesses Create Sculptures out of Canned Goods

 

(September 25, 2019 Dayton, OH) – To raise awareness on hunger in the Miami Valley and support The Foodbank, local businesses are building sculptures out of canned goods with CANstruction® which will be on display for the public.

Local construction companies, architects, engineers and manufacturers, will create structures completely from canned goods on site at the Dayton Mall October 2. The event, sponsored by the Ohio Valley Associated Builders and Contractors, will run from October 2 through October 14. The structures, some of which could reach 10 feet high, will be on display at the center of the mall, just outside of Macy’s. All canned goods collected from the event will be donated to The Foodbank to support local hunger relief. Judges will score the CANstructions by Structural Ingenuity, Best Original Design, Best Use of Labels, Best Meals, People’s Choice, and Most Cans.

Michelle L. Riley, CEO of The Foodbank, said, “One in six people in the Miami Valley struggle with hunger. While it is easy to host a food drive to collect nonperishable food items, it takes creativity, ingenuity, and a lot of time to make art out of canned goods. Thanks to Ohio Valley Associated Builders and Contractors and Miami Township, the canned goods collected will provide hundreds of meals for our neighbors in need. We look forward to seeing the teams create their structures all while making a difference for our community.”

John Morris, Miami Township Trustee Vice President said, “The township is excited to be hosting CANstruction inside the Dayton Mall. We hope that people from all over the region come to shop, eat and view these amazing works of art, bringing canned goods of their own to donate. Collection barrels will be available throughout the mall.  We expect to be able to collect and donate nearly 50,000 cans from this event.”

The public is invited to view the artwork at the Dayton Mall from October 2 through October 14. Visitors are encouraged to drop off their own donations beginning the week of October 2 through October 14.

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The Foodbank relieves hunger in the community through a network of partner agencies by acquiring and distributing food. Food and related supplies are distributed to a network of pantries, community kitchens, shelters and other charitable programs, all of which support the health and development of food insecure individuals in the Miami Valley. Through our over 100 member agencies, The Foodbank distributed over 16 million pounds of food last year. There are 116,720 food insecure individuals in our area, 33,770 of which are children.

Canstruction® is a non-profit 501(c)3 charity which hosts competitions and events creating awe-inspiring, gigantic structures made entirely out of full cans of food. Teams of volunteers, which include design industry professionals, participate in Canstruction events in 150+ cities around the world each year. Afterwards, all food is donated to local food banks. Since 1992, Canstruction has raised over 72 million pounds of food for hunger relief organizations around the world with its signature, trademarked CanArt®.


The Aftermath of the Dayton Tornadoes

The Aftermath of the Dayton Tornadoes

by Aniqa Ahmed, Advocacy Intern

The night of May 27, over a dozen tornadoes ripped through the Dayton Area. The storm, with winds reaching 140 mph, left many families displaced and without electricity, water, and food.

The Foodbank, Inc.’s response began at 5:30 am the following day with Charles Martin III, Service Center Manager, and Michelle Riley, CEO, strategizing how they would get mass amounts of water to the areas most affected. The organization, already flooded with donations from the community, opened its doors by 8:00 am for water distribution. The next day, The Foodbank, Inc.’s onsite drive thru stayed open the entire day to distribute emergency food and water. The heavy traffic flow would continue through mid-July.

The week after the disaster, The Foodbank, Inc. hosted over 1,000 volunteers to help with various aspects of food and water distribution. In the aftermath, the organization provided millions of bottles of water and hundreds of thousands of pounds of food and personal supplies to the community. The team worked days on end distributing these products to Dayton residents in need of relief.

This was not the first time The Foodbank, Inc. helped with disaster relief. The organization was originally a Red Cross operation called the Emergency Resource Bank. And, since becoming a stand-alone nonprofit in 2004, The Foodbank, Inc. has provided aid across the nation in response to disasters. When Hurricane Harvey hit Texas in August 2017, the organization jumped into action, collecting and sending water and supplies to foodbanks in the affected area. This experience with disaster relief helped the team as they worked to make sure every individual’s needs, from water to food and hygiene products, were met. To learn more about The Foodbank, Inc.’s work in disaster relief, click here.

September is Hunger Action Month, Feeding America’s nationwide network of food banks’ awareness campaign designed to mobilize the public to take action on the issue of hunger. Hunger is a reality for 1 in 6 of our Miami Valley neighbors. Together, we can end hunger one helping at a time. Every action counts, so visit us on social media @thefoodbankinc to learn how you can get started.

 


September 20th – Montgomery County Mass Food Distribution

 

 The Foodbank to hold mass food distribution for Montgomery County

 

Dayton, OH (9/13/2019): The Foodbank will be hosting a mass distribution on Friday, September 20th for people in need of food assistance in Montgomery County at UD’s Welcome Stadium from 9am to 11am.

The Foodbank works with food pantries across Montgomery, Greene, and Preble counties to feed people who qualify for food assistance. On September 20th, The Foodbank will be giving out food to individuals through a mass distribution at UD’s Welcome Stadium in Dayton. Individuals are welcome to come to Welcome Stadium at 9am where they will receive fresh produce and other products at no cost. CareSource is sponsoring the event and will be volunteering their time to help pass out the food. The distribution will be set up as a drive-thru.

Michelle Riley, CEO of The Foodbank, says, “There are 90,600 individuals in Montgomery County alone who do not know where their next meal is coming from and we don’t want to see anyone go hungry in the Miami Valley. With support from CareSource, The Foodbank looks forward to serving those in need through this mass distribution.”

“The CareSource Foundation and The Foodbank have been great partners for over a decade,” said Cathy Ponitz, Vice President, CareSource Foundation. “Our mass food distributions are a result of understanding the unique needs of people in our surrounding communities. We’re honored and excited to greet our Montgomery County families with a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables, served by nearly 200 CareSource employees.”

The food will be given out to families free of charge.

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The Foodbank relieves hunger in the community through a network of partner agencies by acquiring and distributing food. Food and related supplies are distributed to a network of pantries, community kitchens, shelters and other charitable programs, all of which support the health and development of food insecure individuals in the Miami Valley. Through our over 100 member agencies, The Foodbank distributed over 16 million pounds of food last year. There are 120,040 food insecure individuals in our area, 34,650 of which are children.

 

 


Volunteering for Hunger Action Month and Beyond

Volunteering for Hunger Action Month and Beyond

Written By: Aniqa Ahmed, Advocacy Intern for The Foodbank, Inc.

 

It is no doubt that volunteers are the backbone of The Foodbank, Inc. Because of their consistent dedication and their enduring passion, The Foodbank, Inc. is able to fulfill its mission of relieving hunger in the community through a network of partner agencies by acquiring and distributing food.

Sean Mitchell has been The Foodbank’s Volunteer and Marketing Manager for two years. Each year, with the help of our volunteers, we are able to send 1,500 kids weekend meals each  week, provide 1,100 seniors a box of food each month, and participate in 30 mobile food distributions a month, just to name a few. After 14 devastating tornadoes hit the Miami Valley this past May, a whopping 1,018 Daytonians responded immediately, volunteering their time and efforts. These volunteers did everything from packing and sorting food donations, to assisting in the drive thru pantry, and writing love notes to those affected by the tornadoes. Last year, The Foodbank distributed 16 million pounds of food with nearly 8,400 volunteers assisting us.

The Foodbank, Inc.’s vision is that no one should go hungry. Volunteers give The Foodbank, Inc. the confidence to start new projects, because the community always seems to step up and help make vision a reality. The Foodbank, Inc. strives to educate our community and make volunteering as easy and efficient as possible. By having the number of volunteers we do, we are able to stay on top of our hunger relief efforts as well as say “yes” to new opportunities. To learn more about volunteering or how to get involved, click here!

September is Hunger Action Month, Feeding America’s nationwide network of food banks’ awareness campaign designed to mobilize the public to take action on the issue of hunger. Hunger is a reality for 1 in 6 of our Miami Valley neighbors. Together, we can end hunger one helping at a time. Every action counts, so visit us on social media @thefoodbankinc to learn how you can get started.


Hunger in the Miami Valley

Hunger in the Miami Valley

Written by: Aniqa Ahmed, Advocacy Intern for The Foodbank, Inc.

 

According to the USDA, an estimated 41 million Americans go hungry every day; this statistic includes up to 13 million children. Many of these families are from areas that are food insecure, such as food deserts located in the Dayton area. A food desert is an area that has limited access to affordable and nutritious food, in contrast to an area with higher access to supermarkets or vegetable shops with fresh foods. The USDA defines food insecurity as “access by all people at all times to enough food for an active, healthy life”. Food insecurity and food access, while different, many times go hand in hand.

In the Dayton area alone, over 116,000 people suffer from food insecurity, including 33,770 children. The Foodbank, Inc. works to serve those impacted by these conditions by operating a drive thru food pantry, a monthly senior food box, distributing food through our many partner agencies, and advocating to elected officials on the importance of funding hunger relief programs.

As well as serving those in need, The Foodbank, Inc. is constantly advocating for hunger awareness. Lora Davenport, our Advocacy and Programs Manager helps advocate for food security on the local, state, and federal levels. The Foodbank, Inc. also shares numerous hunger relief related messages through social media, and educates and encourages volunteers to also raise awareness of food insecurity.

If you would like to learn more about The Foodbank’s advocacy efforts, reach out to Lora Davenport at ldavenport@thefoodbankdayton.org.


September is Hunger Action Month, Feeding America’s nationwide network of food banks’ awareness campaign designed to mobilize the public to take action on the issue of hunger. Hunger is a reality for 1 in 6 of our Miami Valley neighbors. Together, we can end hunger one helping at a time. Every action counts, so visit us on social media @thefoodbankinc to learn how you can get started.

 


August 23rd – Greene County Mass Distribution

The Foodbank to hold mass food distribution for Greene County

 

Dayton, OH (8/16/2019): The Foodbank will be hosting a mass distribution on Friday, August 23rd for people in need of food assistance in Greene County in the parking lot of the Nutter Center from 9am to 11am.

 

The Foodbank works with food pantries across Montgomery, Greene, and Preble counties to feed people who qualify for food assistance. On August 23rd, The Foodbank will be giving out food to individuals through a mass distribution at the Wright State University’s Nutter Center. Individuals are welcome to come to the Nutter Center at 9am where they will receive fresh produce and other products at no cost. CareSource is sponsoring the event and will be volunteering their time to help pass out the food.

 

Michelle Riley, CEO of The Foodbank, says, “There are 21,170 individuals in Greene County alone who do not know where their next meal is coming from and we don’t want to see anyone go hungry in the Miami Valley. With support from CareSource, The Foodbank looks forward to serving those in need through this mass distribution.”

 

“The CareSource Foundation and The Foodbank have been great partners for over a decade,” said Cathy Ponitz, Vice President, CareSource Foundation. “Our mass food distributions are a result of understanding the unique needs of people in our surrounding communities. We’re honored and excited to greet our Greene County families with a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables, served by 150 CareSource employees.”

 

The food will be given out to families free of charge.