Ag Against Hunger, the Salinas and Pajaro Valley's clearinghouse for surplus crops, distributed over 11.9 million pounds of fresh produce to families in need in 2005. Much of this produce was distributed by food banks in Monterey, Santa Cruz and San Benito counties.
“Ag Against Hunger is the local agricultural industry's way of fighting hunger in our community,” says President Joe Pezzini. “Instead of dumping surplus crops, the industry is committed to donating nutritious, fresh produce to families that need, but can't afford, healthy choices.”
Local food banks make Ag Against Hunger's fresh produce donations available to more than 400 nonprofit human service agencies and feed over 200,000 low-income people each month. The program supplies produce to local food banks first and then provides California Emergency Foodlink, a statewide food distribution program, fresh produce which is distributed to over 100 food banks and community pantries in other parts of the state. After state organizations receive the produce they need, Ag Against Hunger works with food organizations in Arizona, Washington, Oregon, Colorado, Utah and New Mexico to feed people nationwide.
Ag Against Hunger's gleaning program thrived in 2005 as well, with volunteers harvesting over 27,000 pounds of produce that would have otherwise been disked under ground. Interested volunteers can contact Ag Against Hunger at (831) 755.1480.