prisoners farming.

In this photo taken Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2009, inmates harvest potatoes at Southeastern Correctional Institution in Lancaster, Ohio. (Kiichiro Sato / AP Photo)

By Frank James

We've seen a number of stories over the course of this recession about food banks running low on supplies as the recession has greatly increased demand.

Now there's a partial solution. More states are using prison labor to either grow or gather agricultural products to help fill the bins at food banks.

An excerpt from an Associated Press story:

The nation's food banks, struggling to meet demand in hard times, are turning to prison inmates for free labor to help feed the hungry.
Several states are sending inmates into already harvested fields to scavenge millions of pounds of leftover potatoes, berries and other crops that otherwise would go to waste. Others are using prisoners to plant and harvest vegetables.
"We're in a situation where, without their help, the food banks absolutely could not accomplish all that they do," said Ross Fraser, a spokesman for Feeding America, a national association of food banks.

categories: Economy

4:01 - August 18, 2009