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Central NY food bank introduces discounted groceries online portal before Christmas

Thursday, December 7, 2023

We are less than three weeks away from Christmas when many families will gather for holiday meals together, and buying groceries could take a big bite out of their budget.

Thanks to the Food Bank of Central New York, you can pay a little less for food. CNY Central first told you about the Food $en$e program a few years ago. Now, they have a digital portal so you can order groceries online, just like you would using Instacart.

Chief Operations Officer Brian McManus said, 

"There's no restrictions whatsoever. It's an opportunity for people to purchase a quality; nutritious food package and really stretch their food budget."

It is open to anyone regardless of their income. The package gives you 12 to 15 staple grocery items at a discounted price. Check out the value of January's package:

  • Italian Meatballs, 1 lb.
  • Chicken Breasts, 1.75 lbs. (avg)
  • Italian Sausage, 1 lb.
  • Ground Turkey, 1 lb.
  • Mozzarella Cheese, 8 oz.
  • Cheese Ravioli, 13 oz.
  • Pasta Sauce, 24 oz.
  • Pizza Rolls, 7.5 oz.
  • Cannellini Beans, 15 oz.
  • Diced Tomatoes, 15 oz.
  • Fresh Produce 1#
  • Fresh Produce 2#

There are also Specials each month like 2 pounds of stuffed pork for $9 and 5 pounds of chicken wings for $10.

According to Hunger Solutions New York, just over 1 in 10 households experience food insecurity. That's why the Food Bank of CNY offers the Food $en$e program.

"If you're provided that or able to buy at a cheaper cost it would be beneficial to everybody," said Loree Schader. 

Schader can afford to buy her groceries but understands not everyone can afford to spend hundreds each month to buy food, let alone healthy options but said programs such as this will help alleviate some of the burden families go through especially when it comes to putting food on the table for their kids. 

"You can provide homecooked meals that are better for them if there is food that you can buy."

The Food Bank said it has seen record numbers of packages ordered in recent months. To order a package, click here.

Right now, online purchases can be only paid for using a credit card only. For other forms of payment, you can contact the site coordinator at your preferred pickup location.

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