Food Bank Coalition of Massachusetts Organizes First Annual Roadshow to Highlight MEFAP Producers


Hatfield, MA – April 25, 2023 – Join The Merrimack Valley Food Bank, The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts, and The Greater Boston Food Bank on a trip to the Massachusetts Emergency Food Assistance Program (MEFAP) vendor, McKinstry Farms in Chicopee on Monday, May 1, from 11:00am – 12:30pm.

The trip is designed to help members of the media and others learn about the value of MEFAP for local farms, food production companies, and emergency food distribution partners. Remarks will be delivered by Andrew Morehouse, Executive Director of The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts, Senator Adam Gomez, Representative Shirley Arriaga, MDAR Commissioner Ashley Randle, and others involved with addressing food insecurity.

“The Massachusetts Emergency Food Assistance Program (MEFAP) provides food for thousands of Massachusetts families through the four food banks and our almost 1000 member agencies,” said Laura Sylvester, MPH/MPPA, Public Policy Manager at The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts.

MEFAP was established in 1995 to ensure that residents in need have access to a supply of quality food in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The program is implemented through a unique partnership between the state and a private, non-profit food distribution network made up of four regional food banks. Funding is provided by the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources.

MEFAP ensures a consistent supply of quality nutrient dense foods and locally grown fresh produce to a statewide network of emergency food providers. Each provider is a member of one of the four food bank distribution centers:

  • The Greater Boston Food Bank
  • The Merrimack Valley Food Bank
  • The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts
  • The Worcester County Food Bank

“MEFAP also affords an outlet for local farms and producers to distribute their goods through the Mass Grown program,” said Sylvester. “This visit to McKinstry Farm will provide an opportunity for legislators (who support the MEFAP budget each year) and visitors to see where local MEFAP food originates. We’re excited to showcase the great produce that McKinstry provides.”

Registration is required. You can choose to tour one or more sites. Visit: MEFAP ROADSHOW

Monday, May 1 – 11:00am – 12:30pm McKinstry Farms 753 Montgomery Street Chicopee, MA 01013

Monday, May 15, 10:00am-12:30pm Cape Cod Commercial Fishermen’s Alliance 45 Barcliff Avenue Ext, Chatham, MA 02633

Friday, May 19, 9:30am – 11:00am Teddie Peanut Butter (Leavitt Corp) 100 Santilli Hwy, Everett, MA 02149


About The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts: The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts believes that everyone has a right to healthy food regardless of their circumstances. Serving Berkshire, Franklin, Hampden and Hampshire counties, The Food Bank leads the region’s emergency food network of 160+ independent, local food pantries and meal sites, distributing nutritious food to households with lower incomes. Since 1982, The Food Bank has been providing individuals facing hunger with the food they need to survive and leading communities towards lasting solutions to food insecurity by addressing its underlying causes. The Food Bank is committed to creating a western Massachusetts where no one goes hungry, and everyone has access to nutritious food. For more information, visit

This institution is an equal opportunity provider, and employer.

Media contact:

The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts

Deb Ondo, Communication and Engagement Manager | 413-419-0170 |

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