Inflation leads to higher demand, less supply for Utah pantries – St George News

Stock image | Photo courtesy of Public News Service, St. George News

ST. GEORGE- During the pandemic, food pantries have been a lifeline for thousands of Utah families going through tough times. However, rising inflation is making it increasingly difficult for these agencies to meet the needs of the population.

In this file photo for illustrative purposes only, a worker stocks shelves at the Iron County Care and Share pantry, Cedar City, Utah, March 22, 2021 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News/Cedar City News

In the 12 months to June, the cost of food jumped more than 10%, second only to the cost of gasoline and utilities.

September is Hunger Action Month, and Gina Cornia – executive director of Utahns Against Hunger – said it comes at a time when the post-COVID economy poses significant challenges for hunger charities. hunger.

“Part of the complication is that they’re seeing bigger families, and so they’re giving out more food, but monetary donations are also down,” Cornia said. “So pantries have to make tough choices about how they serve these families.”

Cornia said that in Utah, more than 360,000 people report periods of food insecurity but only receive an average of $3.85 a day in food stamps. She said the UAH works to shape public policy by educating elected officials on how to make nutrition programs work for people in need.

Cornia said the rising cost of food coupled with dwindling financial donations is making it difficult for many pantries to survive.

“The pantries feel really pinched on all sides,” Cornia said. “How do they maintain the level of service the community needs while keeping their doors open? »

Although Utahns Against Hunger does not distribute food directly, Cornia said its mission is to increase access to food by advocating with policy makers, promoting food assistance and educating the public about the need for food. help his neighbours.

“These are organizations that meet the needs of people every day who don’t have enough money to buy food,” Cornia said. “And we need a commitment from state legislators and the governor to fund emergency pantries at a level they need.”

For more information, visit this website.

Written by MARK RICHARDSON, producer for Utah News Connection.

Read the original story here.

Copyright Public News Service, all rights reserved.

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