Illinois Farm Bureau, Illinois Specialty Growers, the University of Illinois Prairie Research Institute and Feeding Illinois are asking farmers to complete a brief online survey by March 15. The information will be used to assess the potential for a farm to food bank program.

The online survey will take about 10 minutes to complete. Printed surveys are available by contacting Sharon Dodd at sdodd@ilfb.org or Raghela Scavuzzo at Rscavuzzo@ilfb.org.

The survey is the first part of a feasibility study by the four partners on the potential to expand programs and opportunities for farmers to move surplus food commodities to hunger relief agencies throughout the state.

The project’s objectives include providing farmers with additional end markets for commodities, expanding the supply of fresh food to food banks, and increasing food security while reducing food loss and fostering a statewide circular economy.

The partners hope to uncover the optimal mix of incentives and program interventions to overcome existing barriers to efficient flows of fresh, Illinois-produced food to Illinois residents with as little waste as possible.