MOLINE, Illinois -- River Bend Foodbank is expanding, making it easier to feed more hungry people in the Quad Cities. The bank opened a food pantry in SouthPark Mall on Saturday, March 2nd, 2019.
"We tried to find a place that was really accessible, River Bend Foodbank CEO Mike Miller said. "A place that was convenient for guests and that could have high volume to deal with the traffic we hope this generates."
The pantry opened to distribute a surplus of food from The Emergency Food Assistance Program, on the Illinois side of the river. The Emergency Food Assistance Program is a trade package from the USDA. The USDA is buying products that farmers were not able to export due to higher tariffs.
The pantry will also distribute food collected at the Davenport foodbank location. The pantry has a surplus of certain foods like fresh oranges, beans, and rice.
"You get protein, fresh fruits, and veggies," Miller said. "You get canned goods. All kinds of things are available."
Miller says it is not that River Bend Foodbank has enough food to feed all the hungry people, just that there is a surplus of certain goods. Anyone can pick up food at the pantry.
Miller says there are roughly 18,000 hungry people in Rock Island County and 22,000 in Scott County.
The SouthPark mall pantry is open on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays.