Emergency Food Assistance: Providing high-quality, nutritious foods to families in need

Your Community in Action!

By ACSET Community Action Agency

The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) is a federal program of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). TEFAP supplements the diets of low-income Americans by distributing nutritious food at no cost to the recipients. In Kent County, ACSET Community Action Agency (CAA) organizes regular distributions across the county.

The USDA purchases a variety of fresh and shelf-stable foods from domestic producers and distributes to states based on their low-income/unemployed population. The items vary depending on the season, availability and state preferences but always include a mix of fruits, vegetables, grains, dairy and protein products. Food items have reduced levels of fat, sodium and sugar and can include canned and fresh fruits and vegetables, meat, poultry, fish, milk, cheese, pasta and cereal.


The cost of healthy foods and the accessibility of grocery stores make good food choices a challenge for families with limited incomes. For example, you can purchase a package of hot dogs for under $3, while fresh pork or beef costs several dollars per pound. TEFAP ensures that more families have well-rounded, nutritious meals to eat. And because the food is purchased domestically, it also supports American agriculture markets.


Residents of Kent County who have a household income at or below 200% of federal poverty guidelines can qualify for emergency food assistance. To receive food, individuals need to supply a photo ID with current address at the distribution site. The next TEFAP distributions will happen on Thursday, July 13 at the following locations:


ACSET CAA – Kent County Human Services Complex
121 Franklin St SE, Suite 110, Grand Rapids
Distribution hours: 1-7pm*

Flat River Outreach Ministries
11535 E Fulton St, Lowell
Distribution hours: 9-11am & 2-4:30pm*

North Kent Connection
1075 Northland Dr NE, Rockford
Distribution Hours: 9am-3pm*

*Or while supplies last

To learn more about TEFAP and find a full distribution schedule with locations, visit: http://bit.ly/CAAFood.

Your Community in Action! is provided by ASCET Community Action Agency. To learn more about how they help meet emergency needs and assist with areas of self-sufficiency, visit www.communityactionkent.org.