As part of the Coronavirus Farm Assistance Program, the USDA is exercising authority under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) to purchase and distribute up to $3 billion of agricultural products to those in need.
USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service will purchase an estimated $100 million per month in fresh fruits and vegetables, $100 million per month in a variety of dairy products and $100 million per month in pre-cooked pork and poultry products by partnering with regional and local distributors, whose workforce has been significantly impacted by the closure of many restaurants, hotels, and other food service entities.
These foods will then be distributed to Americans in need of food assistance through a program named the "USDA Farmers to Families Food Box." This program will benefit both farmers whose sales have been adversely impacted by the temporary closures of many food service entities and those in need of additional food assistance as a result of COVID-19 mitigation efforts.
USDA has issued a solicitation to invite proposals from farmers, food processors and distributors to supply these commodity boxes, intended for individuals and households, to food banks, community and faith-based organizations, and other non-profits serving Americans in need. USDA will award contracts for the purchase of the agricultural products, the assembly of commodity boxes and delivery to identified non-profit organizations that can receive, store and distribute food items. All products contained in the boxes must be of domestic origin.
Requests for proposals with their bids must be submitted by May 1.
Bidders will be notified by May 8, and the first deliveries will commence on May 15.
Contracts will be issued for the Mid-Atlantic, Mountain, Mountain Plains, Northeast, Southeast, Southwest and Western regions. Applicants can apply for multiple or partial regions. Awardees must identify and manage relationships with food banks, pantries and nonprofits for mutually agreeable delivery and box type items to be eligible.
Request for Proposal and Applicable Attachments:
For solicitation information and purchasing details, visit USDA's solicitations page.
An informational webinar recording providing an overview of the Farmers to Families Food Box Program is available.
For more information about the Farmers to Families Food Box Program contact USDAFoodBoxDistributionProgram@usda.gov.
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