USDA Foods During Disaster

◗ USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) supplies USDA Foods to disaster relief organizations such as the Red Cross and the Salvation Army for congregate feeding or household distribution.

◗ Disaster organizations request food through State agencies. States, in turn, notify USDA of the types and quantities of food that emergency feeding organizations need.

◗ States may use existing inventories of USDA Foods stored at State, local, and school warehouses intended for the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) and other USDA nutrition assistance programs.

◗ USDA Foods include a variety of non-perishable fruits, vegetables, meat, poultry and whole grain

Disaster USDA Foods for Mass Feeding Sites

◗ States have authority to release USDA Foods to disaster relief agencies for mass feeding when the President issues a disaster declaration, and in certain other types of emergencies.

◗ USDA Foods intended for the NSLP are most often used for mass feeding. School inventories are depleted as the end of the school year approaches which may affect what types of USDA Foods are available.

Disaster USDA Foods for Direct Distribution to Households

◗ Emergency feeding organizations sometimes request USDA Foods in smaller sizes to individual households for preparation and consumption at home.

◗ States must get approval from the USDA Food and Nutrition Service to distribute USDA Foods to disaster survivors.

◗ USDA Foods for household consumption are most often obtained from State and recipient agency inventory intended for The Emergency Food Assistance Program.

◗ Households cannot receive both disaster SNAP benefits and disaster USDA Food household food packages at the same time. States must take reasonable steps to prevent households from participating in both programs.

USDA Disaster Manual