We are improving the lives of all Marylanders by making sure everyone has access to nutritious food while providing solutions that address hunger in the first place.
We’re using new tools, new resources, and a wealth of data to make things better for Maryland’s children, individuals living in Communities of Color, older adults, and working families.
What does it take to feed our neighbors in need?
Baltimore (central Maryland), Salisbury (Eastern Shore), and Hagerstown (western Maryland)
How do we get food to hungry Marylanders?
Distributing food from three locations across 21 counties and Baltimore city requires an inclusive approach with different solutions for different situations.
Approximately 350 food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, and other community-based organizations all across the state help provide relief to members of their communities who struggle to put food on their tables.
School Pantries, Pantry on the Go, Summer Clubs, and Supper Clubs offer our neighbors in need access to nutritious food in a variety of settings. We also help connect people with federal and state food assistance programs, such as TEFAP, SNAP Outreach, DSS, and My Groceries to Go!
Maryland Food Bank Programs
Tailored programs ensure food-insecure Marylanders get the assistance they need.
The company I worked for closed last year, and while I have been able to find part-time work, it’s not enough to cover my rent, my bills, and be able to get food at the grocery store. I honestly don’t know how my daughter and I would get by if the Maryland Food Bank wasn’t out here today.”
Where does the food bank get food?
Until recently, our inventory was roughly equal percentages of donated, donated facilitated, and purchased, with the remainder coming from the USDA.
Food comes from grocery and big box stores, manufacturers, distributors, wholesalers and our Farm to Food Bank Program.
Food that MFB buys through relationships with manufacturers and distributors.
Food that is recovered from local retailers by our Network Partners.
Federally sourced food from large-scale manufacturers.
During the pandemic, our model shifted, and we had to purchase a much higher percentage of the food we distribute. We found that the increased flexibility and control over the types of food we purchase results in a more dignified experience, allowing people visiting our partners to make healthier choices.
How do we know how much food to send into communities?
Recognizing that hunger looks different in western Maryland than it does in Baltimore or on the Eastern Shore, we take a regional approach to our food distribution efforts, dividing Maryland into five areas — Western, Northern, Central, Southern, and Eastern.
With data gleaned from our Maryland Hunger Map, we work with our local partners in each region to help determine which of our existing programs or distribution methods will work best in their community. Additionally, we connect partners with nearby social service organizations that can help their neighbors in need address the root causes that are driving them to hunger in the first place.
The Maryland Hunger Map
Latest Food Distribution News
As children across the state return to some form of schooling this school year, we remain committed to providing young Marylanders with access to the food and nutrition they need to succeed. While schools face many uncertainties this year, one thing is for certain – MFB’s steadfast belief that no child should go hungry will eclipse any potential challenges to feeding kids in need.
Since 2011, Amy Cawley has overseen the Farm to Food Bank Program, which combines field gleanings, donations, and contract growing to form the cornerstone of the food bank’s nutrition strategy. She has helped the program grow from its humble roots with just two partners — First Fruits Farms in northern Baltimore County and Arnold Farms in northeastern Queen Anne’s County — into a powerhouse produce program with more than 60 farms that infuse our statewide food distribution efforts with hundreds of thousands of pounds of nutritious fruits and vegetables annually.
Generous support from public and private sources allowed the food bank to provide food and funds directly to community organizations across the state.
Joe Rodriguez is one of hundreds of Marylanders who have transformed their lives through FoodWorks, MFB’s 12-week intensive culinary training program that helps students become professional chefs and find careers in Maryland’s hospitality industry.