Sharing food. Bringing hope.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is hunger really a problem in central and northeast Missouri?

There are about 121,000 people living at or below the poverty line in the 32 counties The Food Bank serves. One in six people in central and northeast Missouri is food insecure. The same rate for children is worse. One in five children under the age of 18 is food insecure. To how food insecure your county is, check out our interactive map. More than 70% of people receiving food assistance are the working poor. The elderly are the fastest-growing poverty population due to fixed incomes and rising medical expenses.

What is The Food Bank for Central & Northeast Missouri?

As the area’s only food bank, we provide food to a network of more than 130 agency partners such as food pantries, shelters, senior centers, low‐income daycares, domestic violence centers and more. The Food Bank for Central & Northeast Missouri is 1 of 14 food banks nationwide to give its food out for free to member agencies. In addition to The Food Bank’s distribution of approximately 28 million pounds of food annually, it offers several direct service programs such as the Central Pantry, the Buddy Pack Program, Food 4 Kids and Mobile Food Pantries.

What’s the difference between a food bank and a food pantry?

A food bank is the supply line to the front line. It is a warehouse and distribution center. Food banks are able to accommodate larger quantities of food and can therefore acquire food at bulk or wholesale prices. The Food Bank then supplies the food it has acquired to pantries which, in turn, provide clients with food and supplies. Both are vital parts of the hunger-relief food chain.

Can the hungry get food directly from The Food Bank?

No. The food is collected, stored and repackaged at The Food Bank’s warehouse. Food is then distributed to qualified 501(c)(3) charities that directly serve those in need. These organizations, or partner agencies, receive food from The Food Bank for distribution to their clients. For a listing of emergency food assistance sites, click here.

How does The Food Bank get food?

Local and regional producers, growers, distributors and retailers donate food to The Food Bank. National food donations also come to The Food Bank via Feeding America™—the nation’s leading domestic hunger relief charity and nationwide food bank network—and through federal government subsidies. Local groups in the community also hold food drives. All food collected in your county will stay in your county to help local agencies feed your neighbors in need.

How is the food distributed?

Food arrives at The Food Bank and is inspected, sorted, labeled and stored at the warehouse for repacking and distributing. The Food Bank delivers directly to partner agencies or prepares orders for agencies to pick up.

Where does The Food Bank get funding?

You! The Food Bank is supported through individual donations, foundations and community partners. For more information about giving options or to make a donation, contact Development Director, Bobbie Kincade, at (573) 474-1020.

How much of my donation goes directly to feed people who are hungry?

Of every dollar donated to The Food Bank last year, 98.1 cents acquired food to help feed feeding hungry people.

How many people will I feed with my donation?

For every dollar, The Food Bank can acquire 15 pounds of food, or 11 meals for those in need.

Is The Food Bank a government agency?

No. The Food Bank is an independent 501(c)(3) organization, and is governed by a voluntary Board of Directors. However, The Food Bank does participate in some government programs that are meant to help with the hunger problem on a national level. These programs include CSFP for seniors and SFSP for children.