We can make a difference in our own backyards!
By some estimates, gardeners could feed 28 million hungry Americans just by donating their extra produce.
That’s exactly what we're hoping our Garden to Give program inspires our community of gardeners to do! To find out how to donate, read our FAQs below.
Thank you for taking the pledge! Your name has been entered in our Garden to Give Sweepstakes. For official rules click here.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you've never donated your fresh-grown produce to a local food pantry or soup kitchen, you may have some questions. We contacted several such hunger relief agencies for answers to the most frequently asked questions. When in doubt, contact your local food pantry for specifics.
Who will be eating the food I donate?
Your neighbors, most likely. The USDA reports that more than 41 million Americans (including 13 million children) lack adequate food at some point during each year. Yet about 11.4 billion pounds of garden produce ends up as food waste each year, according to AmpleHarvest.org. We can change that, one garden at a time!
When is the best time and day of the week to drop off my donation?
It varies. Some food pantries accept donations any time they're open. Others have specific drop-off schedules. Be sure to call ahead.
What should I grow to donate?
The food pantries we contacted accept any fresh produce, including fragile items like lettuce and tomatoes (which are especially appreciated by recipients). However, other food pantries may prefer veggies and fruits with a relatively long shelf life, such as potatoes, squash, apples, and onions. Give yours a call to find out.
Where is my nearest hunger relief agency?
Visit AmpleHarvest.org to find out. Our friends there have registered more than 8,000 hunger-relief organizations across the country, so it's easy to find the one nearest you.
What's the difference between a food pantry and a food bank?
Food pantries (and food shelves) distribute food directly to those in need, so in most cases, it's best to donate fresh produce there. In contrast, food banks are usually distribution hubs for food pantries, so food may be stored there for prolonged periods. If you're interested in supporting a specific food bank, consider a monetary contribution.
Is there any reason I should not donate my fresh produce?
Nope. None that we can think of. And if you do, you'll feel great and possibly make a difference in someone's day. So, don't compost that squash! Donate it!
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