Community Food Services


The 3,400 community food services in the US collect, prepare, and deliver food for the needy. They include food banks, meal delivery programs, and soup kitchens. Food banks collect and distribute salvageable or donated food to individuals through other social service organizations. Meal delivery programs prepare and deliver meals to persons unable to prepare meals for themselves due to age, disability or illness. Soup kitchens prepare and serve meals at fixed or mobile locations.

Demand and Donations Dependent on Economic Conditions

Demand for community food services rises when the economy is weak and unemployment rises.

Focus on Healthier Foods

Concern about nutrition is causing food banks and soup kitchens to source more fresh produce and vegetables, whole grains, fat-free and low-fat dairy products, and lean protein.