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SWFL Seniors Dropped from Federal Food Program due to State Agriculture Cuts

Photo: U.S. Dept. of Agriculture

Cuts by the Florida Department of Agriculture will eliminate a supplemental food program used by nearly 2,300 low income seniors in Lee, Collier and Charlotte counties, according to department officials and distributing agency, the Harry Chapin Food Bank. The cuts go into effect Jul. 1.

The cuts are through the federal Commodity Supplemental Food Program, administered by Florida's Department of Agriculture since January 2015. The state agricultural agency says it's eliminating the program in the three counties while also expanding it in nearby Glades and Hendry counties.


Tuesday at 1:30 p.m., Harry Chapin Food Bank president and CEO Richard LeBer explains what the cuts mean for seniors in Southwest Florida, and his efforts to encourage the state to reconsider the changes coming to the three counties. 

Also joining the program are Ashley Jones with the Salvation Army of Naples, and Teri Lamaine with the Bonita Springs Assistance Office, explaining how their operations putting food in the hands of hungry Floridians, including seniors, will be impacted by the changes.

Matthew Smith is a reporter and producer of WGCU’s Gulf Coast Live.