House Democratic Policy Committee takes look at Pa. food banks

HARRISBURG, April 30 – The House Democratic Policy Committee today held a public hearing in the Capitol to take an in-depth look at food banks in Pennsylvania, announced state Rep. Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster.


Sturla, chairman of the House Democratic Policy Committee, was joined by Democratic chairman of the House Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee Eddie Day Pashinski, D-Luzerne, and other legislators from across the state to hear from stakeholders to discuss the importance of food banks and food security.


“Today’s hearing offered a great opportunity for public and private partnership to come together and discuss how we can tackle food insecurity throughout the commonwealth. I hope we can continue to work together and come up with innovative solutions to make sure all Pennsylvanians have access to healthy and fresh foods,” Sturla said.


Pashinski added, “Food security is a basic human right, and many people would be surprised to know that in Pennsylvania one in eight adults and one in six children struggle with hunger. We must continue to support the food banks around our state that do so much good work to address hunger issues and try to ensure that every Pennsylvanian has access to the food they need.”


The committee heard testimony from Erin Smith Wachter, director of advocacy and public policy, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank; Andy Figart, sales and marketing manager, Hess Brother’s Fruit Co.; Deborah Bentzel, associate director for community food systems, The Food Trust; Eric Saunders, executive director, New Hope Ministries; and Maria Welch, senior wellness specialist, Geisinger Fresh Food Pharmacy and Geisinger Health Plan.


Hearing testimony, photos and video will be available at

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