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Inflation is putting new pressures on food banks

strawberries in large white cardboard boxes
Liz Caldwell

Food banks somehow rose to the occasion when Covid-19 put Floridians out of work. But now they have to deal with inflation, too.

Stephen Shelley is the CEO of Farm Share, which recovers crops from Florida farmers and distributes food to Floridians in need. He says his biggest worry is that demand is increasing for the services of food banks while the supply of food is significantly decreasing.

“Because of inflationary pressure and the cost of food in the grocery store, gas prices and rent prices and things of that nature," he said. "So we’re seeing once again an influx in demand for services from food banks, but we don’t have near the supply of food that was provided to us
during the peak of the pandemic back in 2020.”

What’s more, the cost of diesel and other operations hits food banks as hard as any other business. But since their services are free, the
food banks can’t pass the increased costs on to the consumer.

They’re hoping the federal government will step up.

Follow @MargieMenzel

Margie Menzel covers local and state government for WFSU News. She has also worked at the News Service of Florida and Gannett News Service. She earned her B.A. in history at Vanderbilt University and her M.S. in journalism at Florida A&M University.