LOGAN – Farmers Feeding Utah came to Logan Tuesday and dispersed thousands of pounds of groceries to families and individuals who need a boost during the conoravirus pandemic.
Volunteers from Farm Bureau, Utah State University and other originations were grabbing bags and boxes of locally grown potatoes, meat, eggs and other groceries, then loading them into hundreds of vehicles.
The grab and go started out slow, but when it came time to conclude the event, there was a line of cars spanning the parking lot and out into the street at USU’s football stadium.
“We had about $150,000 worth of food today and everything here we got from local producers,” said Ron Gibson, president of the Utah Farm Bureau Federation. “Our goal was to buy from local producers.”
At a press conference at the Cache Community Food Pantry following the grab and go, Gibson stated that farmers don’t want charity, they want to sell their goods.
“We’ve seen miracles in how needy families in Utah got the food they needed, and we’ve been able to support some of our local farmers,” Gibson said. “Another part of this miracle is to see the way things have come together. Utahns have been incredibly generous and stepped up to the challenge on our first project, and I’m looking forward to making a second delivery to help families in northern Utah.”
He talked about his first trip to the grocery store in March, when the shelves were empty. It reminded him of hearing about things like that from his grandfather when he talked about the depression, “but I never thought I would see that in my day.”
“We have raised $300,000 this year so far,” Gibson said. “And the average donation was $100, which means it didn’t come form businesses, it came from individuals.”
Utah State University President Noelle E. Cockett said when she first came Utah, she was impressed with the charity shown to others by residents here.
“As the land-grant university that is proud to count so many farmers and ranchers as alumni, I can think of no better way to help them during this difficult time – and help needy families as well – than what this program has been doing,” she said. “I’m proud to have our Hunger Solutions Institute and Extension play such a significant role in helping individuals and families in Utah – including our own students – get the food they need. I would encourage current and former Aggies everywhere to visit FarmersFeedingUtah.org a
Matt Whitaker, Cache Community Food Pantry Director, said he was grateful for all the help from donations from Farmers Feeding Utah.
“The Cache Food Pantry has lost two of our major food drives this past year – the Boy Scouts of America and the Post Office food drives – due to coronavirus, and so the food donations used to sustain families are gone,” said Whitaker. “There are more clients than ever because of being out of work, and grocery stores have been less able to donate because of the rush of shoppers. Ultimately, we’re just looking to serve individuals and families in need – especially those that have fallen through the cracks.”