The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) said it would purchase $100 million in produce each month for the next six months from regional and local distributors whose workforce has been significantly impacted by the closure of restaurants, hotels and other foodservice entities through its newly launched Buy Fresh program. The agency also said it would buy similar quantities of dairy products and meat.
The USDA said its Agricultural Marketing Service plans to work with vendors to provide preapproved boxes of fresh produce, dairy and meat products to food banks and other nonprofits serving Americans in need.
For the next two weeks, the USDA is seeking proposals to supply commodity boxes to nonprofit organizations on a mutually agreeable, recurring schedule. The agency said it would award contracts for the purchase of the agricultural products, the assembly of commodity boxes and delivery to identified nonprofit organizations that can receive, store and distribute food items.
An informational webinar for interested participants will be held at 2 p.m. EDT April 21 to provide an overview of the program and instructions for submitting offers. Participants can register in advance for this webinar, but a recording will be available for those who are unable to participate.
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