Friday, November 8, 2019

DEP Now Accepting Applications For Food Recovery Infrastructure Grants

The Department of Environmental Protection is now accepting applications for Food Recovery Infrastructure Grants.  The deadline for applications is April 24. (formal notice)
“Access to fresh food in underserved communities is a public health and quality of life issue, but it’s also an environmental justice issue. While traveling across the state, my staff and I often hear from underserved communities that access to fresh food is a significant concern, so we wanted to do our part to address this issue in a meaningful, environmentally focused way,” said DEP Secretary Patrick McDonnell. “Nonprofit organizations such as food banks, soup kitchens, and shelters provide critical sustenance to those in need, so it’s critical that the food they provide is properly transported and stored.”
“Our agriculture community and charitable food network work together every day to keep Pennsylvanians from going hungry,” Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding said. “These grants will supplement their generosity and help ensure that food donations get safely to those who need them.” 
Reducing food waste is a priority in DEP’s Climate Action Plan. In addition to releasing greenhouse gases, food waste represents a significant portion of landfill waste. 
The  U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates that in 2015, of the 39.7 million tons of food waste that was generated nationwide, three quarters – or 30.3 million tons – of food waste went to landfills, representing nearly a quarter of all solid waste landfilled. 
Funded through the state’s Recycling Fund, grants of up to $200,000 are available to nonprofit organizations for the procurement of equipment (refrigerators, freezers, refrigerant vehicles, hand fork lifts and the like) to reduce food waste disposal from food retailers and wholesalers by repurposing and redistributing apparently safe and wholesome foods to nonprofits in this Commonwealth that provide food to segments of the public.
The nonprofit must describe their current food recovery operation and explain how the food infrastructure equipment will enhance their current program. The organization must also provide a description of their proposed program and provide what food retailers or wholesalers (grocery stores and the like) will be partners for the project. 
The organization must also provide a description of how the program will be operated by staff or volunteers, or both.
Potential applicants are required to meet with their DEP Regional Planning and Recycling Coordinator prior to submitting an application for funding consideration.  A list of contacts is available in the PA Bulletin notice.
Grant applications must be submitted through the Department of Community and Economic Development's Electronic Single Application website, eGrants.
Visit DEP’s Recycling Financial Assistance webpage for more information on applying for the Food Recovery Infrastructure Grant. Questions should be directed to Mark Vottero, Recycling Grants Coordinator, by sending email to: or calling 717-772-5719.
Visit EPA’s Sustainable Management of Food to learn more about food recovery.
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[Posted: November 8, 2019] 

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