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Rising Food Prices Affect D.C.'s Largest Food Pantry

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By: Colin Campbell

Food prices are on the rise locally and nationwide and DC's largest food bank is feeling the pinch. A federal report shows that it's costing more to buy items such as bread, milk and breakfast cereal.

Verniece Green knows the hardship of buying groceries first hand.

"I've had to get help using services like these before. You know, bringing my kids up," she says.

But she's now a Holiday Helpings coordinator for Bread For The City, the District's largest food pantry. The group serves 50,000 people a year and it has seen a steady rise in visitors.

"Families need to eat even though we have this recession going on. They need to be fed. Families need to be fed," Green says.

BFTC also teaches people how to eat healthy on a tight budget. Sharon Gruber is a nutritionist.

"Usually the difference between canned and fresh are what’s added to the sweet potatoes once they’re canned. Heavy syrup is predominate and when they’re fresh you have the opportunity to come up with other ways to season them and make them tasty," Gruber says.

BFTC is distributing a Holiday Helpings bag, a turkey with all the trimmings. It will be served to 8,000 people through the holiday season.

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