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Greater Cleveland Food Bank

Current Issues

Advocate to expand state funding for Ohio’s Food Banks

Ohio’s emergency food assistance network collectively serves more than 2.3 million men, women, and children every three months through a food pantry alone. The Ohio Food Program and Agricultural Clearance Program is operated by the Ohio Association of Foodbanks and is funded by a line item in Ohio’s state budget, which is administered through the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services.

Our state-funded program – the Ohio Food Program and Agricultural Clearance Program (OFPACP) – has been praised for its effectiveness, its demonstrated return on investment, and its efficiency in getting fresh foods and shelf-stable items to Ohioans in need. From every dollar of the $14.5 million in state funding provided to the association in SFY 2014, 95 percent was used to purchase food or improve the distribution network.

OFPACP – which for more than a decade has purchased surplus or unmarketable products directly from Ohio farmers, growers, and commodity producers – is among the most unique and most replicated food programs in the country. It supplies tens of millions of pounds of fresh, Ohio-grown, highly nutritious agriculture products to Ohio’s hungry children, families, and seniors each year—food that otherwise would have gone to waste. 
 
The state funding directs food supplies to millions of Ohioans through the state’s network of 12 Feeding America food banks and more than 3,300 food pantries and soup kitchens. This funding is a highly effective and fiscally responsible use of state dollars, and our association works tirelessly to leverage that funding to maximize our ability to get food to hungry Ohioans.

It’s time to focus on programs that will hasten economic recovery and provide a strong foundation for the future we all share.

For the 2016-2017 biennial budget, our association requests $40 million ($20 million each year) to support the continuation of our grant agreement. The undersigned hereby endorses this request in support of the association’s Ohio Food Program and Agricultural Clearance Program and special child-hunger initiatives.

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