The Feeding America Network

Feeding America is a nationwide network of 200 food banks and 60,000 food pantries and meal programs that provides food and services to people each year. Together, we are the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief organization. When you contribute to Feeding America, you are joining our efforts in nearly every community in all 50 states, Washington D.C., and Puerto Rico.

What is a food bank?

A food bank is a non-profit organization that collects and distributes food to hunger-relief charities. Food banks act as food storage and distribution depots for smaller front line agencies; and usually do not themselves give out food directly to people struggling with hunger.

Food banks in the U.S. are very diverse – from small operations serving people spread out across large rural areas to very large facilities that store and distribute many millions of pounds of food each year, and everything in between. A variety of factors impact how food banks work, from the size of the facility to the number of staff members.  But, one thing all food banks have in common is that they rely on donors and volunteers to carry out their day-to-day operations.


Food Banks

A food bank is a warehouse for millions of pounds of food and other products that go out to the community.

Food Pantries

A food pantry functions as the arms that reach out to that community directly. Some use mobile food pantries, which reach people in areas of high need.

How does the Feeding America network of food banks work?

How do food banks work? Getting nourishing, safe food for people facing hunger requires a robust infrastructure and a high degree of coordination.

knife, fork, plate
Securing Food
Feeding America secures donations from national food and grocery manufacturers, retailers, shippers, packers and growers and from government agencies and other organizations. Our staff works closely with the partners to match excess food with the food banks that most need it.
Shipping and Storage
The Feeding America network of food banks receives and safely stores donated food and grocery products. Feeding America supports member food banks with training, oversight, and equipment grants to ensure perishable and non-perishable food is handled and stored properly.
Distributing Food
The food banks distribute food and grocery items through food pantries and meal programs that serve families, children, seniors, and individuals at risk of hunger. Last year alone, the Feeding America network distributed more than 6.6 billion meals to people in need.
Supporting people facing hunger
The Feeding America nationwide network of food banks also supports programs that improve food security among people facing hunger; educates the public about the problem of hunger; and advocates for legislation that protects people from going hungry. Individuals, charities, businesses, and the government all have a role in ending hunger.