Trump's trade war means more fresh produce for local food pantries

CHICAGO (WLS) -- It's an unexpected wrinkle in President Trump's trade war with China as retaliatory tariffs abroad have led to a massive influx of fresh fruit, milk and meat to local food banks.

It's through a program started last year where the U.S. government buys up and distributes surplus food from farmers that would have been sold overseas.

That's added up to 10 million pounds of extra food for the Greater Chicago Food Depository this fiscal year who just expanded their cold storage, and now they need even more.

"Even with that expansion, we've been overwhelmed by the product we've been getting and we've had to lease some cold storage off site mostly for the frozen products," said Greater Chicago Food Depository spokesman Greg Trotter. "It's an ongoing challenge, but given how beneficial it is to our clients, we welcome the challenge."

Another challenge is about half of the food depository's partner pantries cannot receive supplies because they're not signed up through the USDA government program.
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