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Becker County Food Pantry Director Jack Berenz holds a poster that illustrates that a $10 cash donation to the local pantry can buy much more food than $10 worth of foodstuffs donated to the pantry. All donations are welcome, but cash is king at the Food Pantry. DL NEWSPAPERS/Brian Basham

Crunch time for Food Pantry

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The number of people using the Becker County Food Pantry continues to grow — to more than 16,000 visits last year.

But Becker County was not alone. Across the state, there were 3.2 million visits to food shelves in 2013. That means on any given day, about 8,500 people were seeking help from a food shelf or food pantry in Minnesota.

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