CHICAGO – Food banks in Illinois will have improved access to fresh fruits and vegetables under a new law introduced by state Rep. Sonya M. Harper, D-Chicago.

“Access to healthy food has been a consistent problem in too many historically disinvested communities for too long,” Harper said. “That’s why we’re creating a pipeline from Illinois farms to the food banks that serve these communities and the at-risk people and families who live in them.”

Harper’s House Bill 2879, the Farm to Food Bank Program Act, creates a program to be managed by the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) aimed at expanding the availability of fresh agricultural produce in Illinois’ emergency food system by acquiring that produce directly from Illinois farms or farm produce distributors and providing grants to improve the transportation, storage and distribution of produce within the emergency food system.

The bill was signed into law by Gov. J.B. Pritzker on Aug. 3 and became effective immediately.

“Illinois’ emergency food system has been a critical lifeline for at-risk families for years, but there’s always more that can be done to promote equity and compassionate standards of living,” Harper said. “Dry goods and staples like peanut butter and pasta can be a big help, but ultimately a healthy diet includes fresh fruits and vegetables. Now, soon, Illinois families in need will be able to access a healthier diet.”

Rep. Sonya HarperRep. Sonya Harper

6th District

Visit Rep Harper’s website

Springfield Office:
274-S Stratton Office Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-5971

District Office:
 2015 West 63rd Street
Chicago, IL  60636
(773) 925-6580