Dairy farmers are dumping millions of gallons of milk because restaurants and schools that would normally purchase it are closed. Farmers are also throwing away millions of pounds of produce for the same reason — no buyers.
Meanwhile, food banks across the country are seeing extremely high demand from people who have lost their jobs and can’t afford to go grocery shopping to feed their families. You’ve seen the photos of cars lined up for hours just to get a couple of bags of fruit, vegetables, and beverages.
Why don’t the farmers donate their goods? Partly because it would cost them extra to package and deliver it, and that’s an expense they can’t underwrite when no one is buying their products. When you have no money coming in, you can’t have any more money going out. Thus, it’s cheaper to just dump all that perfectly good food.
But here’s an idea. Every state has a national guard. Governors should mobilize them to take on the responsibility of packaging, picking up, and delivering the milk and produce that would otherwise go to waste. Would that be expensive? Sure, but the cost shouldn’t matter when we’re talking about getting food to hungry people. And it would give governors and other politicians a chance to portray themselves as heroes in an election year.