São Paulo health units raise 2,000 tons of food donations

food donations brazil
Food donations in Brazil. Photo: Valmir Fernandes/Coletivo Marmitas da Terra

Over 400 cities in the state of São Paulo are part of a program to raise food for vulnerable populations at vaccination centers. The idea is to ask people eligible for a vaccine to bring at least 1 kilo of non-perishable food, such as rice, beans, pasta, or powdered milk.

In the space of a week, officials received over 2,000 tons in donations.

As Ana Ferraz and Bruno Rico showed in The Brazilian Report during the weekend, many families lost their livelihoods and income since January, when the initial coronavirus emergency salary program expired. According to Rede Penssan, an organization specialized in food security research, almost 117 million Brazilians struggled to put food on their table.

A new cash-transfer program was introduced last week, but it will issue average payments of BRL 250 — not enough to lift people with no income above the extreme poverty line (USD 1.90 per day).