The Alabama Peanut Producers Association (APPA) donated 14,400 jars of peanut butter to the Alabama Food Bank Association June 11 to assist eight regional food banks with feeding needy families. The COVID-19 pandemic has strained hunger-relief efforts around the state.
Rich Deem of the Montgomery Area Food Bank (MAFB) said the donation will go a long way in meeting a growing demand for his agency. “In our service area of 25 counties we have over 300,000 food insecure people,” said Deem, the CEO of the MAFB. “Demand is higher than ever right now. When unemployment grows, our mission grows, too. We’ve had people in here in the past few weeks who never dreamed they would need assistance in feeding their family.”
Deem said peanut butter is one of the most popular items at food banks.
“It literally flies off the shelf because it’s shelf stable, and you can do so many things with it,” Deem said. “We really appreciate this donation.” APPA made the donation by partnering with Alabama Ag Credit, Alabama Farm Credit and First South Farm Credit, which helped purchase the peanut butter through Peanut Proud Inc., the humanitarian arm of the peanut industry. Trucking for the donation was provided by Southern Ag Carriers Inc., which hauled the peanut butter from a plant from Blakely, Georgia, to Montgomery.
The 10 pallets of peanut butter delivered to the MAFB were shared with other food banks across the state. Peanut farmers like Coffee County’s Carl Sanders say they are proud to grow a product that helps families when they need it most.
“Alabama peanut farmers are especially grateful to grow a crop that is so wholesome and nutritious,” said Sanders, APPA president. “Peanut butter is filled with protein, vitamins and essential nutrients, and it does not require refrigeration. We appreciate the help of the farm credit agencies that helped make this donation possible.”
APPA Executive Director Jacob Davis and Sanders were present for the delivery of the peanut butter at the MAFB as were representatives from First South Farm Credit, Alabama Farm Credit and Alabama Ag Credit.
The APPA is an affiliate of the Alabama Farmers Federation, the state’s largest farm organization. Alabama is home to about 900 peanut farmers, and approximately half of the peanuts produced in the U.S. are grown within 100 miles of Dothan.
For more information, visit alpeanuts.com.