Bringing higher rates of unemployment and poverty, the pandemic has also pushed more people into a struggle to buy the basics, including food.
Grocery store food prices have gone up only about 5% since January 2019, but with so many people out of work, food banks have seen a surge in demand, said Zoë Plakias, an assistant professor of agricultural, environmental, and development economics at The Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES).
While facing an increasing demand, food banks have also received fewer food donations from grocery stores that give their excess products. When stores can’t keep their shelves stocked, there can be less available for donation, Plakias said.
With many incomes reduced during the pandemic, more people are taking advantage of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), previously known as food stamps, and new food aid programs have been started.
But that’s enough to meet the need, Plakias said.… Continue readingRead More »