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May 29, 2002

Five Major Grocery Retail Chains Join to Help Food Banks Fight Hunger in ‘CHECK OUT HUNGER’ Campaign

Dallas, TX – Five major grocery chains in North Texas have joined together to help the region’s two largest food banks fight hunger. Albertson’s, Brookshire’s, Kroger, Minyard and Tom Thumb are sponsoring “Check Out Hunger” at their check out stands beginning June 5 through July 5, 2002. Donations contributed by shoppers will benefit the Tarrant Area Food Bank (TAFB) in Fort Worth and North Texas Food Bank (NTFB) in Dallas.

The “Check Out Hunger” displays hold “scannable” $1.00 coupons that customers can simply turn in at the check out stand; the tax-deductible donations are then added to the grocery bill. At the end of “Check Out Hunger,” supermarkets will present checks for the amount donated to each food bank.

With the recent economic downturn, food bank agencies are seeing an increase of 25 percent in demand for food and related services by the working poor and those laid off. National and local product donations from food wholesalers, distributors and canned food drives are also down by 20 to 30 percent. In addition, the summer months are traditionally a high demand season as schools close and the free school lunch program - that supplements family budgets – is not available.

Together, the North Texas and Tarrant Area Food Banks distribute surplus, donated food to more than 600 charities providing emergency food assistance in 25 counties. Marking its 20th year, the Tarrant Area Food Bank has distributed more than 145 million pounds of food. Each month, this food bank distributes more than one million pounds of food to more than 260 agencies. These emergency pantries and social service agencies serve 32,000 households and provide on-site feeding programs serving more than 450,000 meals and snacks.

Also celebrating its 20th year, the North Texas Food Bank - recognized by Second Harvest at the 2001 Food Bank of the Year - has distributed in excess of 200 million pounds of food. Each month, their agency pantries distribute food to more than 37,000 families and on-site feeding programs serve over 500,000 meals and snacks.

CONTACT:
Colleen Brinkmann
colleen@ntfb.org
North Texas Food Bank
214.330.1396

Andrea Helms
andrea.helms@tafb.org
Tarrant Area Food Bank
817-332-9177

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