Food News

Jan Pruitt, CEO of the NTFB, on The Greatest Misconceptions of the NTFB, 49 Million Meals

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During the summer break, the NTFB provides extra food for kids, does the same go for the winter holiday break? We double up on the food for kids backpack program any time there's a holiday. But, most of the time the kids are being fed through the pantry programs during the holidays. You have to remember that during the holidays food insecure families have to put three meals on the table at a time they've been struggling just to put one meal on the table. It really stretches their budget.

In addition to trying to buy gifts during the holidays... That is also a big factor. The good news is that we're having a really moderate winter, utility costs aren't as high and people aren't missing work because of bad weather, which can be a really big factor. So, that's actually really good news right now.

What are some of the greatest misconceptions about the North Texas Food Bank? The thing people most often don't understand is that we're not an actual food pantry. People think we give food out of our front door, but we don't. We are actually a food distribution company wrapped in an altruistic skin. We're a food distribution center for the non-profit sector.

Also, people don't realize we have almost 175,000 square feet of space for refrigerated and dry food storage.

Do you cook any meals at the NTFB? We have a 3,000 square foot kitchen and the labor force is provided by the women at the Dawson State Jail, who produce 10,000 meals a week, which is the equivalent of a Stouffer's size meal. So, if a family is going into a pantry, they'll probably get a couple frozen casseroles in addition to cans of food.

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Lauren Drewes Daniels is the Dallas Observer's food editor. She started writing about local restaurants, chefs, beer and kouign-amanns in 2011. She's driven through two dirt devils and is certain they were both some type of cosmic force.