In 2015, 70 million pounds of food was collected, which brought the grand total of donations to just under 1.3 billion pounds of food collected over the history of the drive! By working together we can beat last years total! It is held on Saturday, May 14.
Three easy steps to help end hunger:
- Buy food to donate
- Put donations in a bag
- Leave bag by mailbox
When do I put out the food? Just set out your non-perishable food well before your letter carrier’s normal pick-up time. Note that he or she will be delivering and collecting mail as usual, on top of collecting food donations, so that pickup time could be slightly later than usual.
What do you mean by “non-perishable food?” The top requested non-perishable food items are: cereal, pasta, pasta sauce or spaghetti sauce, rice, canned fruits and vegetables, canned meals (such as soups, chili and pasta), 100% juice, peanut butter, macaroni & cheese, canned protein (tuna, chicken and turkey), beans (canned or dry).
Is there anything I shouldn’t donate? Please do not donate frozen food, homemade food or home-canned items, or food in glass jars. In keeping with good food-handling and food-safety procedures, food that is opened, damaged, out of code or does not have the official ingredients included will be discarded by the food bank in the sorting process.
Do I need to use a special bag? No! No special bags are needed. Paper is sturdy and tends to hold more food, while plastic holds up better if it gets wet (in the rain, etc.). Cloth bags or boxes are also fine. So it’s your choice. And most bags and boxes can be easily recycled. We’ll take anything you leave out!
Can I donate toiletries or other personal care items, too? The Food Drive is primarily, well, a food drive, but if you also want to give personal care items (such as diapers, laundry detergent, soap, toilet paper and household cleaning items) in addition to your regular donation, food banks may be able to distribute or put them to good use with organizations that also provide help to those in need. Please note that not all food banks will be able to accept these items.
Does my food donation stay local? Yes—all food stays in your local community. It’s not shipped off to some regional distribution center hundreds of miles away. If you want to know where yours is going, call your local post office and ask to speak to your local food drive person.