The four nonprofit groups that stock food charities across Massachusetts are asking Gov. Deval Patrick’s administration to boost aid in the face of declining federal funds, higher food prices, and rising demand, according to the Boston Herald.
The groups, which serve hundreds of food pantries, shelters, and soup kitchens, are seeking $15-million in state support in fiscal year 2013, up from $11.5-million this year.
Reductions in Department of Agriculture food aid are set to worsen with the failure of the congressional “super committee” to reach an agreement on federal spending, said Catherine D’Amato, head of the Greater Boston Food Bank.
Advocates say state money, which has remained flat since 2007, has declined in value as the cost of staple foods has risen and demand has gone up by nearly a quarter.
Scott Soares, the state’s commissioner of agricultural resources, said the state’s emergency food-assistance program already takes up two-thirds of his office’s budget, leaving little room for an increase.
“There are a variety of programs impacted: food programs and environmental programs,” by the federal cuts, Mr. Soares said. “We are all in a period where we are managing to do less with less. It is a reflection of the state of the economy.”
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