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Food Deserts: Why don't they just take the bus?

The term "food desert" is becoming more common but if you don't live in a food desert, it's hard to know what that means.  A food desert is a geographical area with little to no access to healthy, affordable, nutritious food. People that live in these areas might have a corner convenience store or gas station that carries milk or limited produ...

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USDA Deputy Under Secretary visits Midwest Food Bank

Midwest Food Bank, hosted Brandon Lipps and Tim English, of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, in late October. Brandon is the Deputy Under Secretary for the USDA Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Services, and Tim is the Midwest Regional Administrator. Mr. Lipps reached out and requested a tour of the MFB location in Normal, Illinois after reviewing ...

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The Shop Forward blesses others through MFB

 A simple internet search, a love for fashion, and a desire to help people around the world - that's how Meri Barnes, CEO and founder of California based The Shop Forward, connected with Midwest Food Bank. The apparel company supports a variety of causes including disaster relief. The recent derecho in Iowa and hurricanes in the southeast...

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Midwest Food Bank shares a vision with the World Food Programme

Midwest Food Bank congratulates the World Food Programme for receiving the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize. We are thankful for the efforts of the WFP and fully agree that their impact is worthy of this world-class recognition. WFP is a leading humanitarian organization and addresses hunger and promotes food security worldwide. In 2019, WFP provided assista...

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MFB celebrates World Food Day 2020

Today, October 16, is World Food Day. It's an internationally recognized day in honor of the founding of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations in 1945. It's celebrated by organizations concerned with food insecurity. World Food Day meshes well with of mission of alleviating hunger. This year's theme, "Grow, Nourish, Sustain. T...

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MFB's partner agencies thankful for USDA Farmers to Families Food Program

COVID-19 created a disruption in the US food supply chain. Food producers and suppliers were unable to have food processed and transported. The USDA created the Farmers to Families Food Program to support US farmers and distributors and get that food to people that need it. The program has been authorized through the end of 2020. Midwest Food Bank ...

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Donating non-cash items to Midwest Food Bank

Midwest Food Bank is able to alleviate hunger for those in need due to the generous support received in the form of food donations, volunteer hours and dollar contributions. These are the key inputs to the MFB Business Model.  Some of our donors have given non-cash items to MFB. These include cars, stocks, real estate, collectibles, grain...

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The difference between hunger and food insecurity

Every industry has a "language" and food banks are no different. At Midwest Food Bank we use words like "hunger" and "food insecurity" on a regular basis. But, what do those words really mean? Hunger – This is a physical condition that is caused by a lack of food. Food Insecurity – The USDA defines this as the "lack of consistent access to enough f...

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MFB Florida welcomes Kelly Apfel

There's a friendly new face at MFB Florida. Kelly Apfel has joined our staff as Community Relations Coordinator beginning Monday, September 21. In her new role, Kelly will be coordinating and developing donor relations, and community partnerships for MFB Florida. This role involves pursuing grants, working with volunteers, securing fundin...

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Mary Hohulin, MFB Florida volunteer, brings enthusiasm to help others

"Sure, I can do that." Mary Hohulin has never let a desire to stay in her comfort zone stand in the way of her career, volunteer pursuits, and challenging activities. And, fortunately … so far, so good. Mary has been volunteering up to forty hours a week for Midwest Food Bank Florida. She serves as a bookkeeper, keeping tra...

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Food Bank vs. Food Pantry: What's the difference?

When visitors come to Midwest Food Bank for the first time they are often surprised by the size of our warehouses and the amount of food on our shelves. They aren't expecting forklifts, pallets, and semi-trucks. That's when the conversation turns to the difference between a food bank and a food pantry. Food banks – Midwest Food Bank, like other foo...

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Meet the people behind the opening of MFB Pennsylvania

 A box of cereal and a smile left a lasting impression on a 7-year-old boy in New York. Fast forward to 2020 and that boy is now a man in his early 40s and Jason Serrano can recount that event with clarity. "I know that smile was because she was doing God's work," Jason says about how the woman from a church down the street came to his ho...

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Midwest Food Bank announces a new location in Pennsylvania

Midwest Food Bank will open a new location in the Hershey, Pennsylvania, area, MFB President and CEO David Kieser announced today. Jason and Aleta Serrano of New York are leading a team of organizers to expand MFB's impact. They are currently seeking a facility to lease for the new division. "In Pennsylvania, 1 in 8 households are food insecure, an...

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MFB receiving thanks for COVID Disaster Relief

Midwest Food Bank has been shipping Disaster Relief all over the US since March (stories here and here). Family food boxes have have been helping people affected by business closures and layoffs. Volunteers have been assembling, filling, and driving food boxes every week. The Tender Mercies packing machine has been running non-stop, setting new pro...

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Midwest Food Bank's unique Disaster Relief year

Typically, in July and August, Midwest Food Bank is preparing for the Disaster Relief we will provide during hurricane season. 2020 has been anything but typical. Much of our effort since March has been focused on Disaster Relief. The COVID-19 crisis has placed many people in a position of food insecurity. Thanks to your support, we have been ...

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Midwest Food Bank agencies to benefit from USDA program

Midwest Food Bank is participating in a new USDA program benefitting food suppliers as well as those in need. The program is called the Farmers to Family Food Box Program. The USDA is partnering with national, regional, and local suppliers, who have been significantly impacted by the closure of food service businesses. The USDA will purchase u...

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Connecting with Dad at Midwest Food Bank

It's that time of year again. Articles with titles like "Top ten gifts for Dad" show up. They appear for a reason. It can be difficult finding a meaningful gift for a parent. Forgive us for adding one more suggestion to the mix. Some truly unique and purposeful time spent with Dad would be a gift to both the giver and recipient. What dad wouldn't a...

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MFB Florida mobile pantry makes a comeback

Midwest Food Bank, Florida had to take a timeout from providing food through the mobile pantry due to COVID 19. But, on May 16 the mobile pantry made a comeback delivering 750 meal kits, two pallets of water and one pallet each of bread and canned beans. This mobile pantry has been serving the region for about two years and typically operates on a ...

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MFB welcomes a new bookkeeper

The Midwest Food Bank central team welcomes a new bookkeeper to our team: Julie Bakewell. Julie will be assisting on the central and Haiti MFB accounts. She will be working out of the Bloomington-Normal location. Julie comes to Midwest Food Bank with many years of experience in accounting and non-profit work. They include time spent at State Farm a...

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COVID-19 Disaster Relief posing unique challenges to Midwest Food Bank

This is an unprecedented season of Disaster Relief at Midwest Food Bank. Responding to the needs caused by the COVID-19 pandemic is posing unique challenges.  Most states are experiencing work suspensions and quarantines, causing food insecurity. Rather than sending relief to a single disaster area, our partner, The Salvation Army, has been re...

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