WASHINGTON — U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced today that the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Farmers to Families Food Box Program has distributed more than 20 million food boxes in support of American farmers and families affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Over the past few weeks, the Farmers to Families Food Box Program has continued to pick up steam, getting food in the hands of more and more Americans while providing much needed support to our agricultural sector,” said Secretary Perdue. “This milestone is a testament that the program is accomplishing what we intended – supporting U.S. farmers and distributors and getting food to those who need it most. It’s a real trifecta, which is why we call it a win-win-win.”
“The Farmers to Families Food Box Program has been an extraordinary success having already delivered 20 million large boxes of farm fresh food to those in need! This administration is proud of the collaborative efforts of farmers, distributors, food banks, non-profits and faith-based communities and their workforces in dispersing fresh produce, protein and dairy to those most in need across the United States,” said Advisor to the President, Ivanka Trump.
You may view the Farmers Feeding Families Food Box Program video or on the image below to watch a highlight video of USDA’s Farmers to Families Food Box Program in action across the United States:
Regular updates to the number of food boxes distributed will be posted on USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) website.
On April 17, 2020, Secretary Perdue announced the program as part of the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program developed to help farmers, ranchers and consumers in response to the COVID-19 national emergency.
In response, AMS developed the Farmers to Families Food Box Program and partnered with national, regional and local suppliers, whose workforce has been significantly impacted by the closure of restaurants, hotels and other food service businesses. Suppliers package food products into family-sized boxes and then transport them to food banks, community and faith-based organizations, and other non-profits serving Americans in need.
In under 30 days, the program contracted for $1.2 billion in food products including $461 million in fresh fruits and vegetables, $317 million in a variety of dairy products, $258 million in meat products and $175 million in a combination box of fresh produce, dairy or meat products, and began distribution of the food boxes across the United States on May 15, 2020.
Since then, over 20 million food boxes have been distributed to families in need while providing much needed support to critically impacted agricultural sectors.
The initial round of Farmers to Families Food Box Program contracts worth $1.2 billion will be completed June 30. USDA is continuing its commitment to support of American agriculture and families by extending some well performing contractors through the next performance period, July 1-Aug. 31, for up to $1.16 billion of food. USDA will use this next performance period to continue providing great service in areas that are well represented and focus improvement efforts on increasing access to the program in underserved areas up to the program’s $3 billion authorization.
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