Monday, March 1, 2010

Young Farmers & Ranchers Donate 5.3 Million Meals in 2009

Farm Bureau Families Raise Record Funds for America’s Hungry

WASHINGTON, D.C, February 26, 2010 – The farm and ranch families of Farm Bureau last year raised more than $213,000 and donated more than 4.8 million pounds of food to hungry Americans as part of Farm Bureau’s “Harvest for All” program. Combined, the monetary and food donations provided the equivalent of nearly 5.3 million meals through Feeding America-affiliated food banks.

The money raised last year was a record and broke the prior record of $160,000 in 2008. Farm Bureau’s Harvest for All program began in 2004, and the program has continued to build momentum since then.

Members of Farm Bureau’s Young Farmers & Ranchers program spearhead the Harvest for All program across the nation, but all facets of Farm Bureau contribute to the effort. The joint effort between Farm Bureau and Feeding America is a national community-action program through which farmers can help ensure that every American can enjoy the bounty produced by the nation’s farm and ranch families.

“In these difficult economic times, Harvest for All is all the more important,” said Will Gilmer, AFBF YF&R chairman and a dairy producer from Lamar County, Ala. “As farmers and ranchers, we are blessed to work every day, feeding America and the world. Harvest for All is a great way to share our many blessings with those less fortunate than we are.”

Since Harvest for All was launched seven years ago, Farm Bureau families have gathered more than 20 million pounds of food, logged more than 35,000 volunteer hours and raised nearly $1 million in donations. Combined, the food and monetary donations amount to nearly 24 million meals.

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Most of us take for granted having food on our plate everyday and not worrying about the next day’s meals. But for many that is not the case. One in eight Americans used a food bank in 2009. Farmers and ranchers are well-known for their efforts to make their communities a better place to live. Part of doing that is making sure that our neighbors have a place to get food when they are struggling to do so on their own. The efforts by these young farmers and ranchers from across the country have made a difference in the lives of hungry people. Since 2004, more than 24 million meals have been provided by these young farmers and ranchers.

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