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Programs and Services

Food Distribution
From our 15,000 sq. ft. facility in Ewing Township, outfitted with walk-in freezers and refrigeration, loading docks, and two-tier racking system, the Food Bank receives and distributes donations as small as a few cans of soup to a bin of sweet Jersey Fresh produce, to a pallet of assorted groceries culled from supermarket shelves, to a tractor trailer load of cereal.

The Food Bank obtains its inventory of food and groceries from a wide range of sources: the USDA; food producers such as manufacturers, packers and processors; food businesses such as distributors, wholesalers, and retailers; farmers and growers; food drives, food collections and donations from individuals.

Healthy Eating Initiatives
Helping our member agencies and their clients to access and consume nutritious food is an important part of the Food Bank’s work. Fully 90 percent of all the food we distribute meets Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2012. Our nutrition programs include:
• Nutrition Information—Monthly nutrition messages and recipes in English and Spanish.
• Guides for Good Health—nutrition and health themed posters, flyers and handouts distributed to member agencies of the Food Bank.
• Send Hunger Packing Extras—nutrition information and educational tools for food insecure children to teach them and their families about healthy eating and making healthy food choices.

Advocacy
The Food Bank advocates for legislation and public policies that offer long-term solutions to food insecurity. We speak out and encourage elected officials and policy makers to safeguard and strengthen government food and nutrition programs that provide the safety net for vulnerable families; we increase awareness of hunger in our community and we engage others to be part of the community response to hunger.

SNAP Outreach
Our SNAP Outreach staff visit community sites to disseminate information, prescreen people for eligibility and assists those found to be eligible in applying for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (formerly known as food stamps).

Send Hunger Packing – A child hunger focus
On Friday afternoons during the school year, we provide children known to have little food at home with a backpack filled with kid-friendly, easy- to-open, nutritionally sound food to ensure that such children have meals to eat on weekends.

For more information, call 609-406-0503 or send an email to: foodbankinfo@mercerstreetfriends.org