BERLIN, Vt. (AP) — Advocates for a program that uses federal coronavirus relief money to distribute free restaurant-made meals intended for people in need during the pandemic and to help those eateries stay afloat can be funded past mid-December.

Sue Minter is executive director of Capstone Community Action in Barre. She says that in three months of the program, $1.5 million has been allocated to the industry. She says that has allowed over 100 restaurants to prepare 150,000 meals.

She said at Central Vermont Medical Center on Thursday that “seven months into the pandemic hunger in Vermont is increasing.”