Washington Commodity Donation Sign-On Letter
Please join this organizational sign-on letter requesting that Governor Jay Inslee include $25 million in his 2024 State Operating Budget to help fund large-scale procurement of donated Washington commodities for hunger relief efforts statewide. 

This investment would both further the state's hunger response and advance us toward achieving the Wasted Food Reduction Act of 2019's established a goal reducing edible food in landfills, by half, by 2030. 

If successful, a statewide nonprofit produce cooperative would be named to scale up sourcing and distribution of donated Washington grown and produced food commodities to send them to food bank distribution centers, which would then to supply food banks, pantries and meal programs throughout the state. 

For questions, please contact Aaron Czyzewski, director of Advocacy & Public Policy at Food Lifeline - aaronc@foodlifeline.org. Thank you!  
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Dear Governor Inslee,

Hunger in Washington state is a problem that has not subsided. In fact, hunger relief agencies today are seeing demand at levels that exceed, in many cases, food insecurity during the peak of the pandemic.

Hunger relief food bank distribution centers are purchasing more food than ever before - at higher costs, moving it faster, and maintaining their lowest levels of inventory. It has become the new normal.

Washington landfills are overburdened with wasted food that contributes to methane emissions, the most dangerous form of greenhouse gas. It is why the state established goals for Washington to reduce the annual generation of food waste by 50 percent by 2030.

Washington growers and producers produce food in abundance and have incredible amounts that end up unsold. These foods are often, but not maximally, donated at nominal "pick and pack out" costs to hunger relief efforts. For example, Feeding Washington, the nonprofit produce cooperative of the state’s two Feeding America partners, sourced more than 53 million pounds of donated Washington produce last year – only scratching the surface regarding what is available.

For these reasons, we are requesting that you include $25 million in your 2024 State Operating Budget proposal for harvesting and transportation costs associated with donated agricultural commodities. These are monies paid to Washington growers and producers for processing and packaging donated agricultural products in an acceptable size for food banks.

This investment would nearly double the food available for hunger relief efforts statewide – food that may otherwise be lost – at a time when it is needed most. It is estimated that an additional 52.5 million pounds of produce and up to 10 million pounds of highly desired items like meat, seafood, eggs, and dairy products are available to be distributed throughout the state’s existing food banking networks.

To be sure, this potential to divert more than 60 million pounds of Washington agricultural commodities is a win for Washington families, a win for Washington farmers and food producers, and a win for the climate.

Thank you for your consideration.

A copy of your responses will be emailed to the address you provided.
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