The commonwealth supports and funds several programs that help fight Pennsylvania. Among them are the State Food Purchase Program (SFPP) and Pennsylvania Agricultural Surplus System (PASS).
State Food Purchase Program (SFPP)
The State Food Purchase Program (SFPP) remains one of the commonwealth’s most important tools in the fight against hunger and a lifeline for food banks across Pennsylvania.
The program provides cash grants to help these charitable organizations acquire and distribute millions of pounds of food to hungry families, children, seniors, individuals with disabilities, the working poor and the unemployed who rely on food banks for essential nutritional assistance in all 67 counties.
Funding supports the purchase of foods and nutritional supplements, food provider transportation and infrastructure, and access to federal food commodities.
SFPP began during the height of the recession in 1983, launched as an informal funding complement to The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP), a federal program. In December 1992, state legislators, recognizing the program’s value, officially adopted SFPP as Act 129. The program is funded in the state budget through a line item with the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture.
Pennsylvania Agricultural Surplus System (PASS)
Hunger-Free Pennsylvania is an advocate for the Pennsylvania Agricultural Surplus System (PASS), which redirects millions of pounds of Pennsylvania-grown fruits and vegetables to nutritious family meals. PASS dollars are allocated to serve each of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties using the State Food Purchase Program formula.
With PASS, millions of pounds of Pennsylvania-grown agricultural products that would otherwise go to waste each year can instead help to provide nutritious meals, ensuring a virtuous cycle that benefits Pennsylvania’s agriculture sector, farm communities, and Pennsylvanians in need of food assistance.
PASS was created in 2010 and has been steadily funded at $1.5 million since 2017, which only covers a portion of the nutritious bounty that could be recovered from farms and processors.