It is working.
FROM OUR CEO
Our community is working.
Hunger is decreasing.
Our community is vast. Our community includes
YOU. It includes every person who is currently or
has experienced hunger. It includes our donors
and our volunteers. It includes our partners: the
amazing regional food banks and service sites
throughout Oregon and Southwest Washington.
It includes every anti-hunger advocate. It
includes every person and organization that
invests time and energy to defeat hunger.
And thanks to the efforts and energy and
dedication of our ginormous community, hunger
At Oregon Food Bank, we know that hunger is
not just an individual experience; it’s also a
community-wide symptom of unequal access and
barriers to employment, education, housing and
In 2016, a federal mandate kicked in that limited
SNAP benefits for able-bodied adults without
dependents – unless they worked or volunteered
at least 20 hours a month.
Our 10-year Vision
We believe food is a basic human right.
We envision resilient communities throughout
Oregon and Southwest Washington that never
Hunger is not just one empty stomach or an
individual experience. Hunger is a communitywide
symptom of exclusion, of not having enough
– not having enough nutritious food, enough
income, enough power, enough represented voice.
Hunger is a symptom of barriers to employment,
education, housing and healthcare.
Signs of Systemic Progress
According to the recently-released USDA
Household Food Security Study, food insecurity
in Oregon dropped by 31 percent from 2015 to
2018. The overall rate of hunger in Oregon is
now 11% – about the same rate it was in 2007.
Oregon is finally back to the level of hunger we
experienced before the Great Recession.
Let that sink in: Oregon, in the past year, has
finally RETURNED to the rate of hunger we
experienced in 2008. It took a decade for this
to happen because our neighbors facing hunger
did not have access to living wages or affordable
housing. The economic recovery did not reach
School Pantries: Community with
a Side Helping of Food
A school pantry is a food pantry that operates
regularly in a school – in the gym, community
resource room or wherever they can find the
space. Despite the prosaic name, these pantries
are an amazing focus of community life for
schools … that also distribute nutritious food.
Oregon Food Bank has opened and is supporting
40 school-based food pantries – a 200% increase
over the past five years. We have leaned into
school pantries because they address both sides
of our mission: eliminating hunger and
its root causes.
Feeding the Northwest
Apples. Potatoes. Pears. Onions. Carrots.
We grow a lot of delicious food in the Northwest
– defined here as the states of Oregon,
Washington and Idaho. Produce has to meet
exacting standards for size, appearance and
condition in order to be sold. Which means that
there is a lot of extra produce that is too big or
slightly the wrong color. Depending on the year,
there can also simply be a bumper crop – more
than consumers will purchase. For these reasons,
Northwest growers end up with a lot of excess
are part of our community
Corporate volunteer groups gave more than
27,000 hours of their time this year to help
repack food, work in our gardens or take action
to end hunger. Many of our corporate partners
also support Oregon Food Bank through financial
donations alongside volunteer shifts, in workplace
giving programs, and by hosting food and
fundraising drives. These efforts brought nearly
2.1 million meals to communities across Oregon
and Southwest Washington — and we couldn’t be