New partnership increases fresh-food donations to food pantries

4:13 PM, Sep 30, 2013   |    comments
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DENVER - September is National Hunger Awareness month and also the time when many gardeners find themselves harvesting more food than they can eat. One call is all it takes to connect backyard gardeners with families and individuals in need, thanks to a new partnership between the Denver-based coalition Produce for Pantries and the Hunger Free Hotline.

Produce for Pantries addresses hunger in Colorado by encouraging community, school and home gardeners to plant, grow and share produce with those in need via food pantries and hunger-relief organizations in their neighborhoods. The coalition is comprised of 13 organizations including Grow Local Colorado, Cooking Matters, Denver Urban Gardens, Slow Food Denver, Plant a Row for The Hungry, Livewell Colorado, Food Bank of the Rockies, Metro CareRing, Yardharvest, Share Our Strength's No Kid Hungry campaign, Brighton Shares the Harvest and St. John's Cathedral. Produce for Pantries also collaborates with Maxfield's Organics and the Garden Centers of Colorado to encourage garden center patrons to donate their excess produce to those in need.

Gardeners across the state can find nearby participating food pantries by calling (855) 855-4626. Food pantries can be added to the Hunger Free Hotline database as a participating organization.

Colorado residents are also encouraged to use a new resource, Local Food for Local Need: A Guide to Food Donation for Colorado Gardeners. The guide, which was produced in collaboration with LiveWell Colorado, Produce for Pantries and Hunger Free Colorado, includes suggestions for recruiting a gardening network, recommendations for ensuring food safety and ideas for increasing awareness.

Learn more about the new partnership and how you can get involved at and Access the food donation guide online at

Content provided by Hunger Free Colorado, in collaboration with Produce for Pantries.

(KUSA-TV © 2013 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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