While browsing a friend's church's website to find out when their alternative gift fair will be held this year, I came across information about a program they offer called Angel Food Ministries. For $28, including tax, anyone can get a big box of food. In December this buys: 4 5oz. ribeye steaks, a 2lb. lasagna, 2lb. of chicken breast, 1 lb. honey roasted pork sausage, 1 lb. chicken breast fajitas, 1 lb. meatballs, 1 lb. hot dogs, 3 lb. fresh apples, 8 oz. biscuit mix, 1 lb. mixed veggies, 1 lb. cut corn. 1 lb. sliced carrots, 14 oz. chicken broth, 24 oz. hashbrowns, 6.5 oz. hamburger dinner, 10 waffles, and one desert item. It isn't the healthiest assortment of foods know to man, but it isn't terrible either. They take food stamps as well as cash and checks.
The information sheet stresses that anyone may order as many boxes as desired and that ordering more doesn't take food away from someone else. They buy the items once the orders are in, and the $28 covers the cost of all of the food. They save a lot by buying directly and in bulk. A friend of mine has bought food from them before, and it helped keep her and her husband going after her parents decided to disown her (A long story, they are back on speaking terms with her parents, but my friends are still surviving on slightly more than minimum wage and some student loans).
I'm considering trying it. It's more meat than I generally eat in month, but it should keep well in the freezer. If I decide to do this regularly, I'd gladly volunteer to help out on distribution day. Can anyone think of a major downside to signing up for December's food shipment?