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Demand greater than supply for Farmers to Families Food Box Program

Published: Oct. 7, 2020 at 7:16 AM CDT
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ALTOONA, Wis. (WEAU) - In spite of the fact that the Farmers to Families Food Box Program has already handed out over 100 million food boxes to needy Americans, it’s not enough to meet demand. In new reporting from the Washington Post, indications are that the program will run short of both food supplies and volunteers to get that food out within the next year. The report says about 10% of American adults, just over 22 million people, said they didn’t have enough to eat last week. That’s up from 18 million the week before. Following a survey of Food Banks around the country, the Post projects a shortfall of between 6 and 8 billion meals for needy Americans next year.

In both June and July, Wisconsin cheese makers churned out more cheese than they did a year ago. But that trend changed in August as state cheese production fell just over 1% to 277.6 million pounds for the month. Production of American and cheddar varieties was up in August but production of Mozzarella and Italian varieties was down. Nationally August cheese production was down just over 2% to a little over 1 billion pounds. California continues to rank second in cheese production with Idaho third and New York fourth.

Farm commodity prices for Wisconsin farmers weren’t all that great in August. Corn averaged $3.02 a bushel-down 3 cents from July and 87 cents less than last August. Soybeans were a little better as the August price averaged $8.57 a bushel-21 cents better than July and up 32 cents from a year ago. Oat prices averaged $2.50 a bushel in August-31 cents less than July and 53 cents less than last August. Alfalfa hay brought $164 a ton in August-up a dollar from July but down $21 from last year. All other hay averaged $112 a ton-down $7 from July but the same price as last August.

This is national 4-H Week running from October 4th through the 10th. 4-H is the largest youth organization in the world with over 7 million members in more than 50 countries. Wisconsin has over 150 thousand 4-H members with more than 13,000 volunteer leaders. The emphasis of the week this year is the STEM Challenge. The effort is to get members interested in more science, technology, engineering and math type projects and careers.

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