USDA spotlights Feds Feed Families

Staff report

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue has kicked off the 10th annual Feds Feed Families Campaign at the U.S. Department of Agriculture headquarters in Washington D.C.

The food drive is an annual event in which federal employees around the country collect food for distribution by food banks, food pantries, and shelters.

Perdue has teamed up with Geoff Plague, a managing director at Feeding America, and Gary Oppenheimer, founder and executive director of Ample Harvest for the campaigm, which touts the importance of federal employees making a difference to the less fortunate.

The USDA has chosen to run the campaign differently. Instead of reporting out the pounds of food donated by agency or department, the agency will report out one metric across the federal government every Friday. Federal employees will no longer focus on competing with one another for the most pounds of food collected, and instead focus on our mission of coming together to help those in most need.

As in prior years, donations made in the Washington D.C., metropolitan area go to food banks in the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia through a partnership with the Capital Area Food Bank. Other donations go to food banks across the country.

The food drive runs through Aug. 9, with federal employees collecting nutritious foods, both canned and fresh when possible. A closing ceremony will be hosted on Aug. 16.

Since 2009, federal employees have raised over 88 million pounds of food for Feds Feed Families. USDA hopes to bring that total up to 100 million this year.

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Staff report