BASF Helps Fight Hunger With $75,000 Donation To Feeding America

Contribution will help provide nearly 340 tons of fresh fruits and vegetables to U.S. food banks

 

By Laurie Greene, CalAgToday Editor, Reporter

 

BASF is donating $75,000 to Feeding America, the nation’s largest hunger-relief organization, to help feed struggling families and individuals throughout the U.S.

“Hunger is a very real problem for tens of millions of people in America, including low-income families and seniors,” said Scott Kay, Vice President, U.S. Crop Protection for BASF. “Through our contribution to Feeding America, we can help provide healthy fruits and vegetables to people and communities who may not have regular access to them. In many ways, this partnership is an extension of the work we do every day with growers to help them feed our hungry world population.”

The donation will support Feeding America’s National Produce Program, an initiative that helps with planning, transportation and logistics to ensure fresh produce deliveries to the 200 member food banks around the country.

The commitment from BASF will help Feeding America provide 675,000 pounds of produce to families and individuals in need. The donation includes $5,000 in contributions from BASF grower customers who chose to be part of this donation.

“BASF was a natural fit to partner with Feeding America as we continue to focus on providing more nutritious fruits and vegetables for the clients we serve,” said Nancy Curby, vice president of corporate partnerships for Feeding America. “Their support will help extend the reach of our National Produce Program and help more Americans in need.”

Employees at the Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, BASF headquarters also raised more than $18,000 for the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina through a virtual food drive and a special showing of the movie “Farmland.” The BASF Crop Protection division is also sponsoring the local ABC network affiliate WTVD’s “Heart of Carolina” food drive during the holiday season to collect food and raise money for the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina and the Second Harvest Food Bank.

“Our business and our employees are very pleased to partner with the many dedicated food bank volunteers who share our commitment to feeding those facing hunger, not only during the holidays, but all year long,” Kay said.

 

BASF’s Crop Protection division provides innovative solutions in crop protection, seed treatment and biological control as well as solutions to manage water, nutrients, plant stress, pest control and public health. The Crop Protection division supports growers to optimize agricultural production, improve their business efficiency and enhance the quality of life for a growing world population. Further information can be found on the web at www.agro.basf.com or through our social media channels.

Farm to Food Bank Month

The following was written by Governor Brown…

California is America’s most robust and bountiful agricultural producer. With over 81,000 farms and approximately 400 crops, agriculture in the Golden State is responsible for feeding much of the nation and world.

As California’s economy recovers amidst one of the worst droughts on record, farmers and ranchers across the state are also doing their part to prevent the spread of hunger and expand access to affordable, nutritious food in their communities.

We owe those within the agricultural sector our gratitude during these challenging times. I urge all Californians to recognize the contributions of California’s agricultural community, as well as the food banks and partner organizations they work with to provide nourishment to the most vulnerable among us.

Farm to Food Bank Month

 

Celebrate Farm to Food Bank Month and team up with the California Association of Food Banks, the California Department of Food and Agriculture, & California Grown to help out! For more information http://www.cafoodbanks.org/ 

 

State employees donate 13 tons in Turkey Drop, Set record at Sacramento Food Bank

By: Monique Bienvenue; California Ag Today Social Media Manager/Reporter 

A partnership between California state employees and the Sacramento Food Bank has helped produce a record number of turkey donations via the 2014  Turkey Drop. The food bank accepted more than 9,300 turkeys for needy families in the Turkey Drop, with 1,760 of them–more than 26,000 pounds (13 tons!)–provided by state employees.Sacramento Food Bank

The Turkey Drop is one element in the ongoing State Employees Food Drive. Other ways to contribute include a rice donation program and a continuing effort to collect canned food and other items. State offices throughout the region have staged colorful bins to make donations easy.

The Sacramento Food Bank is Sacramento County’s largest direct food bank provider feeding approximately 40,000 food-insecure individuals a month, including 15,000 children and 8,000 senior citizens. In 2013, the food bank distributed over 6.5 million pounds of food, including 2 million pounds of fresh California-grown fruits and vegetables.

December is Farm to Food Bank Month . Help increase farm to food bank donations to 200 million pounds annually by making a product donation or future donation pledge today – contact Steve Linkhart, California Association of Food Bank at (510) 350-9916.

Food Assistance Available In Counties Hit By California Drought

Source: CBS Sacramento

Families in areas hardest hit by California’s drought are getting some much-needed help as part of the state’s $687 million drought relief bill.

Yolo County is able to put some of that money to use by feeding families in need.

“Most of us here in town, they work on the fields, and they depend on the season,” said Claudia Covorrubias.

But she says this season, the drought is taking its toll, and her husband is out of his usual farm work. It’s a familiar story in Yolo County.

“We need the water,” she said. “If there’s no water, there’s no planting. So if there’s no planting, there’s no food.”

The need was seen by state leaders who set aside $25 million in the recent drought bill to help feed families like hers. The money is being spent on boxes going to food banks from 24 of the hardest hit counties where unemployment and agricultural work is higher than the state average.

COUNTIES AFFECTED: Amado, Butte, Colusa, Fresno, Glenn, Kern, Kings, Lake, Lassen, Madera, Merced, Modoc, Monterey, San Benito, San Joaquin, Santa Cruz, Sierra, Siskiyou, Stanislaus, Sutter, Tehama, Tulare, Yolo, Yuba

The Yolo County Food Bank began handing out more than 5,600 boxes of donations at two locations on Monday.

The boxes include nonperishable, nutritionally balanced food that can last four or five days for a family of four.

Families qualify if the drought has caused them to be unemployed. “It’s all on an honor system,” said Stephanie Sanchez. “We’re really trying to just help out families in need. If they can’t prove it, we don’t want to have to turn them away.”

Emmanuella Eliadiazzamora has a daughter and is expecting another child in less than a month. For her, the help is huge.

Severe Drought Now Covers 100% of the State

Mark Svoboda, National Drought Mitigation Center, reports that all of California is now depicted as being in severe drought (D2) or worse this week, with the D3/D4 areas remaining unchanged. A heat wave is settling in that will only serve to exacerbate and accelerate drought impact concerns across the state. Increased water demand and risk of fire will ramp up as the heat does, and the state’s agricultural industry continues to suffer. The current drought map is included below.

A cursory review of drought impacts includes:

Groundwater: CDFA reports the state’s groundwater resources are at historically low levels. Fifty percent of the 5,400 wells assessed have dropped since 2008 to points lower than they in the previous century. San Joaquin Valley levels fell more than 100 feet below previous historic lows, while Sacramento Valley, Sonoma Valley and Los Angeles basin levels fell up to 50 feet. Note that the analysis was done in the spring when groundwater levels are usually at their highest.

Curtailments: CDFA reports curtailments in various watersheds, depending upon runoff conditions, water demand and the type of water rights. Water rights holders, including water agencies, farmers and other property owners, have been unable to receive their due water supplies. Junior water rights holders lose out first. Efforts are underway to save water for essential health and safety purposes, wildlife and habitat.

Food Assistance: The California Department of Social Services announced food assistance provisions to at least 24 counties with high unemployment rates and a high proportion of agricultural workers. Foodbanks struggle to supply provisions as the state grows less produce and sources provide lower produce donations.

Livestock Reductions: Many cattle and other livestock producers in California transported thousands of animals by truck to other states as they cannot wait out the stunted grass and depleted water sources. Reuters reported that up to 100,000 California cattle have left the state in just the past four months and producers are selling their cattle early.

Fruit and vegetable prices:  rose 2 and 3 percent in 2013, respectively, per USDA, as low water supplies affected production. A similar price increase in 2014 is likely as more than three million acres out of the nine million acres of irrigated land in California receive no surface water, aside from rain.

Reduced production:  USDA forecasts a 20 percent reduction in rice production and a 35 percent drop in cotton production in California this year as farmers leave fields fallow in response to very meager water allocations.

Photo credit: Robert Galbraith/ReutersUS Drought Monitor CA

 

Drought Monitor Key