Potatoes donated to food pantry

Published 10:43 am Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Project uses reclaimed produce to help feed hungry

As part of the Potato and Produce Project of the Society of St. Andrew, a semi-truck full of potatoes was delivered to the Harvest for the Hungry food pantry Tuesday morning.

The Society of St. Andrew is a nonprofit organization that helps feed the hungry while leading others into the lives of Christian community service, and its Potato and Produce Project salvages potatoes and other produce that are rejected by retail markets or potato chip companies due to minor imperfections in size, shape, sugar content or surface blemishes.

This is the fourth year Harvest for the Hungry has taken part and received potatoes, which are then also distributed to several other food pantries around the area.

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“This costs us nothing and it garners so much good will,” Harvest for the Hungry director Diane Porter said. “And we have six or seven other pantries who come and take advantage of it.”

The potatoes and produce involved in the project would normally end up in landfills, but thanks to the Society of St. Andrew, it is all redirected to soup kitchens, food pantries, low income housing areas, local churches and other hunger agencies around the country.

The food is all donated to the Society of St. Andrew, meaning the society only pays for transportation and packaging of the food, significantly reducing total costs involved.

“It’s a wonderful thing,” Porter said.

Others who pick up potatoes from Harvest for the Hungry include the Chesapeake Community Mission Outreach, Trinity Assembly of God Church in Coal Grove, the Ironton City Mission and the Lawrence County Juvenile Center.
Porter thanked the city of Ironton for allowing the pantry to use a forklift to unload the potatoes.

The Harvest for the Hungry food pantry is open from 9 a.m.-noon on Mondays and Wednesdays and from 5-8 p.m. every third Thursday for those who can’t get to the pantry during the day hours.

Every 60 days, new patrons can utilize the pantry. A valid ID is required.