(USDA) – Today, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced the award of over $7.5 million for Fiscal Year (FY) 2022 in Farm to Food Bank Project funding to 29 states and territories that administer The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP). Farm to Food Bank Grants support the harvesting, processing, packaging, or transportation of food donated by agricultural producers, processors, or distributors for use by emergency feeding organizations, like food banks.
The TEFAP Farm to Food Bank projects help to reduce food waste, expand the availability of locally grown foods in TEFAP by facilitating producer donations, and foster stronger relationships between industry, food banks, and other organizations through food donation efforts. Projects funded through TEFAP Farm to Food Bank Grants explore ways to improve local food systems, with a focus on diverting excess agricultural products to those in need.
For example, in Ohio, grant funds will be used to reimburse cheese producers for the cost to pick, pack, and transport surplus “cheese trim,” the cheese that remains after exact weight packaged cheese bricks are cut for sale. The cheese trim will be donated, shredded, packaged, and ultimately distributed to individuals in need through the State’s food bank network.
Projects span diverse geographic regions, with states in all regions of the country receiving funding. In FY 2022, grants will reach 29 states and territories, including 7 that are newly participating.
States and territories participating in FY 2022 projects are: Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado*, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii*, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Michigan*, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana*, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico*, Texas, Utah*, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia*, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
*Newly participating in FY 2022.