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State of Hunger 2023: From Hunger Crisis to Food Justice

As the hunger crisis continues to loom over our region in the wake of rising food costs, ongoing market disruptions and sunsetting federal emergency support, Oregon Food Bank President Susannah Morgan and colleagues delivered the annual State of Hunger Address on National Hunger Action Day — September 15, 2023.

“Even though the official pandemic emergency has passed, hunger remains stubbornly high in our communities,” shared Susannah Morgan, Oregon Food Bank President. “Free food markets, pantries and meal sites throughout the region continue to report record-high demand. Combined, we expect over a million people will seek emergency food assistance through the Oregon Food Bank Network this year alone.”

Despite the immense reach and impact of Oregon’s emergency food network — which includes 21 regional food banks and more than 1,400 food assistance sites — we know that we cannot end hunger through food alone. We need action to prevent hunger from happening in the first place. That means addressing the policies and systems that drive hunger and poverty in our communities.

The root causes of hunger are systemic, so the solutions must be systemic too. So at Oregon Food Bank, we hope to deliver more than just meals to meet immediate needs; we’re pursuing food justice — eliminating hunger for good.

Food justice is more than just getting food on the table today. It's about making sure that food is available, affordable and sustainable for everyone, every day. Food justice is the belief that food is a human right.

Hunger Action Month is a time when we all come together to bring focus, attention and action to the fight to end hunger… to the fight for food justice.

Vicky Shwoeffermann, Associate Director of Policy and Strategic Partnerships
Learn more and get involvedLearn more and get involved

September is Hunger Action Month — a time each year when people across the country join together to volunteer, donate and take action in the fight to end hunger and its root causes. Throughout the month, Oregon Food Bank shares information about current challenges and actions we can all take to end hunger for good.

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