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$3 million in USDA funding awarded to WNY to help fight food insecurities

“Folks don’t have a whole lot of money and people shouldn’t be choosing between eating and light, eating and gas."
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Posted at 5:51 PM, Feb 23, 2022

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — Congressman Higgins has joined other organizations Wednesday morning to announce a four-year federal grant of almost $3 million to improve access to fresh food.

Higgins says the funds should boost the option to afford healthy foods.

"No family should have to worry about where their next meal has to come from," Higgins says. "Thanks to this grant, families living in food deserts would have increasing options in purchasing affordable fresh foods."

The grant caters to low-income families to be able to afford nutritious foods.

The federal funds will also expand in the SNAP benefits by investing in the "Double Up Food Bucks" program to address food insecurities in communities.

Feed more WNY's Mobile Farm Market trucks have taken part in this mission.

"We work with a bunch of corner stores in Buffalo's Eastside, we work with some locations in Buffalo's Westside," says Lisa Lunch, executive director of Field & Fork Network. "But we're always looking to grow our footprint here in Buffalo and, of course, in other parts of Western New York."

The founder of African Heritage Food Co-op, Alexander Wright, takes the initiative to fight food insecurities.

He says many disadvantaged communities continue to be victimized by food prices.

"Folks don't have a whole lot of money, and people shouldn't be choosing between eating and light, eating and gas, and eating and taking care of their children," Wright says.

Wright plans to have the abandoned building on 238 Carlton Street as its very own one-stop and shop for the Fruit Belt community.

"We want to make sure that you have food for life, not food for death, and that's why this is going to be a full-service grocery store, not a corner store," he says. "We're going to be focusing on people eating to live."