Food Banks That Churches Count On Are Challenged By Rising Demand, Spoilage Issues

In August, Our Father’s House of Refuge began a regular free community food giveaway, distributing upward of more than 45,000 pounds of fresh fruit, vegetables and nonperishable food via the Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida to needy residents in and around Eustis. “I’m so grateful for it,” Perry said. “There are a lot of people like me that are caught in the middle.” Pictures: Child stars then and now Last month, the ministry distributed food at Family Bible Church on East Orange Avenue. An October date couldn’t be worked out, but another giveaway is planned for November, said ministry founder Pete Custodio, who also operates a Food Bank Wednesdays event at the rear of Tip Tops screen printing at 100 S. Bay St. Custodio also runs a transition house for the homeless at 504 E. Orange Ave, where he also leads a 7 p.m. worship service and potluck dinner each Sunday. Plenty of need With each passing week and month, said Custodio, who founded the faith-based nonprofit three years ago, the lines get longer and the faces get less familiar. But Petty and others are just the kind of folks the New York City native was hoping to reach those who don’t get public assistance or little, if they do and are either unemployed or living paycheck to paycheck. “I see different faces each time now,” said Custodio, 43. “We help 90 to 100 people on Wednesday and our last monthly food distribution had nearly 300 people turn out.” Diabetic Josephine Brinkley said she receives just $79 a month in food stamps, which barely pays for basic staples such as milk and bread, let alone meat and vegetables. “The free food helps me fill in the gap,” said Brinkley, who also visits the food bank each Wednesday.

Looking At Too Many Food Pictures Could Ruin Meal Enjoyment, Study Finds

By Hamil R. Harris , E-mail the writer From the loading dock of the cavernous Capital Area Food Bank, Bishop Godfrey Nwaneri and members of the Divine Grace Mission loaded several carts of frozen meat and fresh vegetables that they would take back to the church and offer to those in need of food. Once at the church, Nwaneri said he would make sure that the meat and vegetables were distributed quickly after all, such precious food shouldnt go to waste. Video Bishop Godfrey Nwaneri of Divine Grace Mission discusses what it’s like to work closely with a food bank to feed those in need. (Sarah L. Voisin/The Washington Post) – Gerri Magruder, executive director of Helping Hands Ministry at the First Baptist Church of Capitol Heights, is pictured at the Capitol Area Food Bank. We try to shop very close to the distribution day so the perishables would not spoil, said Nwaneri, who hands out food on the first Saturday of every month. The Maryland pastor is part of a network of more than 500partner agencies that distribute 45 million pounds of food to more than 500,000 people across the Washington area each year. And although the distribution includes bread, cereal and canned goods, there is increasing focus among church food banks to supply fresh vegetables and meat for the good health of those in need. Fresh food thats the key to lowering high blood pressure and diabetes, said Jeri Bailey, director of the food pantry at the Dupont Park Seventh-Day Adventist Church, who was at the food bank the same day as Nwaneri. We prepare bags for 130families a week that includes a meat, fresh greens, canned goods and other items, Bailey said.

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Food Prices: One Year After

An expected 13 percent increase in world cereal closing stocks should drive up the global stock-to-use ratio to 23.3 percent, the highest since 2003. If the expected increases in stock-to-use ratios are confirmed, then the markets will have greater resilience to any shocks and price volatility should be restrained It is also important to recognize the role of global governance in this positive development, by increasing transparency, market information and helping control factors that had led to price spikes before. The Agricultural Market Information System (AMIS) played an important role in making this happen. Set up by the G20 in 2011 with a multi-agency secretariat hosted by FAO, AMIS provided timely and reliable information, increasing transparency in the international food market and assuring better coordination between the main players to reduce market instability and unilateral action. The United Nations System also granted the issue high priority. The UN Secretary-General’s High-Level Task Force on Global Food Security repeatedly and energetically called for calm and coordination, contributing to contain price increases. The reformed Committee on World Food Security — that will session starting Monday October 7 — has proven its value as the most inclusive forum to discuss food security and, in a landmark achievement, endorsed last year the Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests in the Context of National Food Security . Among many other initiatives, last October FAO hosted a ministerial summit to discuss food prices, co-organized with the Government of France who played a leading role in establishing AMIS. In 2007-8, increased use of maize for biofuel production was pressuring food prices, excessive speculation on futures markets accentuated price volatility and panic buying and export restrictions led to prices spinning out of control. But, in 2012, these elements were generally controlled and good sense prevailed in markets. The importance of linkages between food and energy markets has been recognized and the costly biofuel policies implicated in pushing up food prices in recent years are being questioned in a number of countries, including the USA.