News & Updates

We strive to be a trusted source of information and expertise to elevate the issues, challenges, and opportunities facing food insecure Ohioans.

Press Releases & Media Statements

Aug 11, 2023

Two-Day Tour Highlights Farmer and Foodbank Partnerships

USDA Agricultural Marketing Service, Congressional Offices Tour Urban and Family Farms and Foodbank, Discuss Farm Bill Priorities

Partners from state and local agencies, Ohio foodbanks, and Ohio farmers highlight early success of Local Food Purchase Assistance (LFPA) program in Ohio, value of public-private partnerships, and importance of a Farm Bill rooted in food security

Jul 12, 2023

Ohio Foodbanks Leadership Transition

Ohio Association of Foodbanks executive director Lisa Hamler-Fugitt to retire after more than 20 years of leadership; Joree Novotny, long-tenured chief of staff, appointed as new executive director

Jun 30, 2023

Press Statement: Ohio Budget Invests in Food Security

The Ohio Association of Foodbanks is deeply grateful to Chairmen Rep. Jay Edwards and Sen. Matt Dolan and conference committee members for prioritizing hunger relief and food security in Sub. H.B. 33, the state’s two-year operating budget. We look forward to the passage of this biennial budget and to continuing our strong partnership with Governor DeWine and the State of Ohio to provide food and other resources to Ohioans in need.

Media Coverage

Nov 23, 2023

Ohioans hit food banks in record numbers as SNAP requirements hinder assistance programs

As Ohio food banks see record-breaking amounts of need, the state is also at risk of losing federal funding that could help residents get essential needs and boosts in employment.

After the most recent state budget passed with a plan to redesign the education and training piece of the state’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), food and employment advocates across the state watched as the program became a “compliance machine,” rather than a way to bring Ohioans out of poverty.

Nov 16, 2023

Dollar General settlement gives Ohio foodbanks $750,000

Money from a settlement between Dollar General and the Ohio attorney general will go to foodbanks throughout the state.

The state sued Dollar General in November 2022 after county auditors found the company overcharged customers at stores throughout Ohio. Attorney General Dave Yost announced Thursday that as part of the settlement, Dollar General agreed to pay the state $750,000 so the state could give the money to food banks. The money will be used to purchase food and personal care items.

Nov 15, 2023

Advocates: WIC will have to ration benefits if budget not increased

The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children is facing a funding shortfall in Ohio and nationwide, even without the threat of a government shutdown.
Advocates said nationally, increased participation in WIC along with food price inflation have eaten away at the allotted budget. U.S. Department of Agriculture data from August show WIC enrollments in Ohio were up 12% over last year. While inflation has slowed, food prices are still up nearly 4% over 2022.
Joree Novotny, executive director of the Ohio Association of Foodbanks, said simply continuing to fund the program at current levels is inadequate.

Publications & Reports

Nov 7, 2023

Faces on Capitol Square: Lisa Hamler-Fugitt Reflects on Foodbanks Career, Says Ohio Must Address ‘Aging Problem’

Capitol Square is devoid of one of its most visible lobbyists -- for a while, at least.

The decision to step down from her role leading the Ohio Association of Foodbanks (OAF) was “bittersweet,” Lisa Hamler-Fugitt told Hannah News during a wide-ranging interview. (See The Hannah Report, 7/12/23.)

Story originally published in The Hannah Report on November 6, 2023. Copyright 2023 Hannah News Service, Inc.

Aug 16, 2023

Letter to Congressional Black Caucus Leadership and Ohio Members RE: Farm Bill

The Ohio Association of Foodbanks joined with about a dozen Black led food, nutrition, health, social service, and environmental organizations serving the state of Ohio to submit a letter to key members of the Congressional Black Caucus about shared Farm Bill priorities.