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AUSTIN – Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller announced $95 million in grants to Texas food banks through the Food Bank Capacity Building Grant program. The program was created using funds from the Coronavirus State Fiscal Recovery Fund established under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. This strategic investment in food bank infrastructure and partner capacity will enhance the ability of Texas food banks to respond to natural disasters, public health emergencies and other crises in the future.

“Texas food banks are an integral part of the response during times of disaster, especially these last two years,” said Commissioner Miller. “Multiple crises continue to strain the ability of food banks to meet increased demand, particularly in rural and other underserved communities. This investment in our food bank infrastructure and distribution networks will ensure our ability to continue responding to the needs of Texans.”

Since 2020, food insecurity has spiked in Texas and food banks have doubled their normal volume of food distribution to meet the increase in need. With increased support from the public and private sectors, Texas food banks distributed nearly one billion pounds of food in 2020 alone.

There are 21 food banks leading a unified effort for a hunger-free Texas, all coordinated through the Feeding Texas statewide network. Each food bank acts as the hub of hunger-relief efforts in its region and collectively they reach all 254 counties in Texas.

“We are especially grateful to our state leaders for investing in the future of Texas hunger-relief, as well as to Congress and the White House for making this recovery funding available,” said Celia Cole, CEO of Feeding Texas.

This statewide infrastructure combined with supply chain expertise, crisis response management, and relationships with the food industry uniquely positioned Texas food banks to respond to the surge in need.

“With this effort we can get more help to those Texans who are truly in need or underserved, which should always be the goal of any state or federal assistance program,” Commissioner Miller stated.