Oregon Department of Human Services (ODHS) will work with subgrantee and key project leader Oregon Food Bank (OFB) to improve supply chain resiliency by building partnerships with local and regional producers, in order to lay out pathways for alternative distribution channels to combat hunger. OFB will leverage strong statewide connections to food hubs, community partners and partner agencies in order to provide funds to growers, ranchers, seafood harvesters, food distribution organizations, and processors who will then distribute product to their local and regional communities.
Priority will be given to producers who are socially disadvantaged, small or beginner, located in rural areas, and those who intend to supply food to communities not typically served through traditional food distribution networks. These agreements are an opportunity to provide food access outreach in multiple languages and through the most relevant and accessible channels for local communities. Producers who don’t currently distribute to communities impacted by hunger will be connected to distribution outlets throughout the Oregon Food Bank Network of 20 Regional Food Banks and partner agencies such as food pantries, Free Food Markets, food hubs, and/or community organizations.
Through this program, ODHS and OFB will 1) Increase the number of socially disadvantaged farmers supplying food to underserved communities; 2) Identify non-TEFAP distribution channels to serve underserved communities; and 3) increase connectivity between growers through peer-to-peer sharing.