Today, Secretary Vilsack announced that, during the month of July, USDA employees donated more than 270,000 pounds of canned goods and fresh produce to feed families across the country as part of the Feds Feed Families food drive! That means USDA employees have worked together to donate more than 370,000 pounds of food in just two months. With more than 1,800 USDA offices throughout the country participating, here are a few examples of how USDA employees are contributing to the Feds Feed Families campaign.
So far this August, a USDA Service Center in Tipton, Iowa, has harvested 165 pounds of beets, 500 pounds of sweet corn, 140 pounds of green beans, 270 pounds of tomatoes, and 30 pounds of zucchini from their People’s Garden to benefit Feds Feed Families. And that’s in addition to the canned goods that they are collecting! Their hard work was highlighted on the local CBS news affiliate, KCRG-TV, which you can view here.
The Iowa team is delivering their produce and canned food donations to the Tipton Senior Center and Bread of Life Food Pantry. Mike Boyle, of the Tipton RD office, said, “It is such a joy to see the smiles on the faces of those receiving this fresh produce. Our team has enjoyed participating in this food drive, as it is an awareness of the needs of those less fortunate in our local area.” The team expects to continue their harvest through the rest of the month, and make a strong finish in their local Feds Feed Families food drive.
In the Garden State of New Jersey, five agencies came together for a gleaning event held at Sun Valley Orchards in Salem County. USDA Rural Development State Director Howard Henderson, Farm Service Agency State Executive Director Paul Hlubik, NRCS State Resource Conservationist Tim Dunne, John Gibbons from National Agricultural Statistics Service, and Aqueelah McGee from Food & Nutrition Service gathered a team of around forty USDA employees to pick vegetables to donate to Feds Feed Families. Thanks to nonprofit organization, Farmers Against Hunger, and local farmer Russ Marino whose family farms about 1,784 acres in Gloucester and Salem Counties, roughly 10,760 lbs of corn, eggplant, cucumbers, zucchini were donated to the Pennsauken and Franklin Food Banks.
Thanks to the hard work and generosity of our USDA employees, we are making a difference in the fight against hunger. And it’s not too late to get involved. We only have two full weeks left in the Feds Feed Families campaign to surpass our USDA goal of 500,000 pounds of food donated, and we’re going to need everyone’s participation to get us there.
To learn more about how you can participate in the Feds Feed Families effort click here.