NJ Food Pantries Receive Over $16K From Check-Off Program

Photo by Judy Smestad-Nunn

TRENTON – The Community Food Pantry Fund, a state income tax form check-off program, has brought in over $16,000 to be distributed to New Jersey’s six food banks, New Jersey Secretary of Agriculture Douglas H. Fisher recently announced.

“New Jersey taxpayers have made a direct impact on the lives of many Garden State families in need with their donations,” Secretary Fisher said. “When filing your taxes, please seek out this fund and donate to this worthy cause.”

The NJ food banks that received some of these funds are:

  • Community Food Bank of New Jersey, Hillside
  • Food Bank of South Jersey, Pennsauken
  • Fulfill (formerly the Food Bank of Monmouth and Ocean Counties), Neptune
  • Mercer Street Friends Food Bank, Ewing
  • Southern Regional Food Distribution Center, Vineland
  • NORWESCAP, Phillipsburg

The Community Food Pantry Fund, recommended by the state’s Hunger Prevention Advisory Committee, is an “on-going funding stream to assist with the acquisition of emergency food to enhance the emergency food provider system.”

Taxpayers can use the check-off program to contribute a portion of their tax refund or make a donation to the fund.  Money collected for the fund must be used exclusively for food purchases.

Since its inception in 2010, over $171,000 of taxpayer-donated money has been distributed to the foodbanks through the fund.

According to the Department of Agriculture, Governor Murphy and the State Legislature allocated $6.8 million for the current fiscal year’s New Jersey Department of Agriculture State Food Purchase Program (SFPP). That money is distributed quarterly to the state’s six food banks for the purchase of healthy foods, with an emphasis on buying produce from New Jersey farmers.