Rep. Schrier seeks quicker farm-to-food-bank channel amid COVID-19 crisis

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U.S. Rep. Kim Schrier, D-8th District.

WENATCHEE — Democratic U.S. Rep. Kim Schrier of the 8th District and Republican Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Spokane have teamed up to help surplus food move more easily from local farms to local food banks while the coronavirus pandemic is in effect.

Their Farmers Feeding Families act, just introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives, would fund states and food bank services to buy from local farmers, to replenish charitable supplies while taking excess produce off farmers’ hands. A companion bill is underway in the Senate.

“Our states know how to help us best,” Schrier said in a press call Friday with fellow congressional members. “… I’ve asked for money to go straight to the states so they can get that to farmers of all sizes, and get that food directly to food banks. The USDA program is going to take months to roll out. People are lined up around the block now to get food, and I think that our states can expedite that if we can get more money to them.”