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This is Chris Redgrave for Zions Bank Speaking on Business.
Food prices have skyrocketed in the last few years. In 2011, food prices had the sharpest increase in 36 years. They're expected to rise anywhere from 3 to 4 percent in 2012, but some believe the inflation will be even higher. The government's forecast is based on the consumer price index for food which estimated prices would rise 4 to 5 percent on beef alone, based on the drought in 2012.
What this means for us in Utah is that more people than ever before are in need. Currently, one in 10 Utahns and one in eight Utah children lives in poverty. An impoverished family of four makes about $22,000 a year to cover health care costs, shelter, food and other household expenses. Utah is currently ranked fourth in the nation for food insecurity, which means that individuals are at risk of missing or skipping a meal due to a lack of resources.
In Utah we're taught to take care of our own. As a community bank, Zions strives to be actively involved in important community issues and wants to help provide for those in our own communities. That's why starting Tuesday, September 4, Zions Bank is teaming with the Utah Food Bank to help fight hunger.
The Utah Food Bank currently distributes over 30 million pounds of food to 150 pantries and agencies worldwide. This organization can stretch a donation of just $1 into $7 worth of food and services. That's why every donation can change a life, no matter the amount.
The Utah Food Bank is also supporting the Backpack Program where they provide balanced and nutritious meals for school children over the weekend. Each child receives a backpack filled with enough food for six meals and two snacks. In 2011, the Utah Food Bank distributed almost 18,000 backpacks to Utah's children.
Stop by a Zions Bank branch today to drop off food or visit utahfoodbank.org to find out more or to donate electronically.
For Zions Bank, I'm Chris Redgrave, speaking on business.
Utah Food Bank www.utahfoodbank.org