STOP THE CUT to the Texan Surplus Agriculture Grant
Last October, Tarrant Area Food Bank (TAFB) shared the importance of the Surplus Agricultural Products Grant that salvages surplus crops and products and reallocates them to local food banks. This grant continues to face a 41% cut as a result of COVID-19 budgeting, but it is precisely because of the pandemic that the need for this surplus food is so great. The following are simple ways to join TAFB and Feeding Texas‘s STOP THE CUT effort.
Even before the local need for food skyrocketed as a result of the pandemic, the Surplus Agricultural Products Grant was a significant source of fresh food that food banks distributed. If Texas legislation cuts the grant, 19.8 million pounds of surplus produce will not be distributed to Texas families. For the one in four families now facing food insecurity as a result of COVID-19, this loss would be devastating.
Feeding Texas, a statewide organization aiming to end hunger in Texas, is recognizing Wednesday, January 27 as a day dedicated to STOP THE CUT! If you or someone you know benefits from receiving fresh food from Tarrant Area Food Bank, or you want to ensure your neighbors continue to receive nutritious produce and agriculture products, we need your help.
Make them listen.
The first step to change is raising your voice. If you’ve never contacted a Representative or Senator before, click here to enter your address or county and learn to whom you should reach out. Once armed with that knowledge, call or email the representatives in your area and let them know how critical the Surplus Agricultural Products Grant is to organizations like Tarrant Area Food Bank. For more information on the grant, its impact and its significance, click here for a flyer.
Better yet, we have a pre-written message you can send once you fill in your name and details:
Dear [Name of Legislator/Staff Person],
My name is [Your Name] and I am a constituent in your district. I care deeply about hunger, because I [insert reason here, such as working at a food bank or other anti-hunger organization or your lived experience of hunger].
I am writing to encourage Senator/Representative [Name of Legislator] to support reversing the FY20-21 $1.9M cut to the Surplus Agricultural Products Grant in the supplemental appropriations process. Since 2001, this grant has supported a cost-effective strategy to fight hunger, improve health, and reduce food waste. With more Texans at risk of hunger than ever before, this is not the time to be cutting this critical source of healthy, fresh produce for our community.
I have attached a one-pager that provides additional information about this grant program and the harmful impacts of this proposed cut. Please do not hesitate to reach out to me if you have any questions.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
Tell your friends.
These days, you’d be hard pressed to know anyone who doesn’t have social media. Taking to the the Internet to tell your friends and family about the proposed cut will show solidarity with your neighbors who rely on groceries from the Surplus Ag. grant. Simply start by sharing this article, or borrow a message from us:
- Texas food banks could be short millions of pounds of food thanks to budget cuts. Tell the #TXLege to #StopTheCut and fully fund the Surplus Agricultural Products Grant!
- At a time of urgent need, a state program that provides fresh food to food banks has been slashed. The proposed $1.9M cut would take nearly 20M pounds of produce away from hungry families. Tell the #TXLege to #StopTheCut!
- The Surplus Agricultural Products Grant provides healthy produce to Texans in need. The proposed $1.9M cut would take nearly 20 Million pounds of produce away from hungry families. Tell the #TXLege to #StopTheCut!
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Tarrant Area Food Bank will monitor the grant cut closely. To follow our efforts and to see how TAFB continues to serve the community during the pandemic, follow us on all of our social accounts.