Young Farmers Give Back to Local Families in Need this Harvest Season

Andrew Steiner FAWM

Taking a stand against hunger in their local communities, the Michigan Farm Bureau (MFB) State Young Farmer Committee donated $1,000 to each of Michigan’s seven regional food banks in the state. The funds will be utilized to purchase in-demand food products for local families in the region.

“Our state’s 18-35 year-old young farmers work hard to promote hunger awareness and raise funds to give back,” said committee chair Mark Daniels. “As farmers and young people starting careers and families of our own, we see and feel for our neighbors in need. It’s our hope this donation helps more Michigan families access affordable, quality foods.”

Despite the bountiful harvest being gathered across rural Michigan, more than 1.7 million Michiganders—including 20 percent of the state’s children—don’t know if or when they will get their next meal. MFB’s young farmers donated a total of $7,000 to help stock regional food banks serving food-insecure families in all 83 counties.

“We have a long, wonderful history with Michigan farmers. Over the years, millions of pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables have been purchased and donated from our local farmers for distribution through the food bank network. This donation from the Michigan Farm Bureau State Young Farmer Committee carries on a legacy of compassion and generosity that Michigan farmers are known for,” said Dr. Phillip Knight, Executive Director of Food Bank Council of Michigan.

The donation is one part of the group’s Harvest for All campaign, a partnership between MFB’s Young Farmer and Promotion and Education committees and the Food Bank Council of Michigan. This partnership is designed to fight hunger in Michigan through donations of non-perishable food products, volunteer time, monetary donations and donations of surplus agricultural commodities to local food banks or agencies. Last year the campaign helped contribute more than two tons of nonperishable food items, 159 tons of surplus commodities and $26,000 in donations to local food banks and agencies statewide.

“As farmers, we dedicate our lives to feeding people, making Michigan’s food banks a perfect partner,” Daniels added. “We work every day to help produce healthy food for families across the world. We’re proud to grow that food, but we’re also proud to help put it on the tables of our neighbors in need.”

The young farmers’ donation will be doubled by Monsanto through the Invest an Acre program, magnifying the impact to $2,000 for each food bank and $14,000 statewide.

About the Food Bank Council of Michigan: The Food Bank Council of Michigan’s mission is to create a food secure state through advocacy, resource management, and collaboration among stakeholders and Michigan’s unified food bank network. FBCM works with its seven regional food banks and more than 3,000 hunger relief agencies, private companies, farmers, state and federal officials and other allies to make sure Michigan residents don’t go hungry. For more information, visit fbcmich.org or call 517-485-1202.

About Michigan Farm Bureau: Established in 1919, Michigan Farm Bureau is the state’s largest farm organization, representing farms of all sizes and commodity types. Its mission is to represent, protect and enhance the business, economic, social and educational interests of its farmer members. For more information, visit michfb.com or call 517-323-7000.

About Michigan Farm Bureau Young Farmers: Michigan Farm Bureau’s Young Farmer program identifies and serves the needs of young farmers, assisting both their personal and professional lives. The program further develops leadership skills in members ages. For more information, visit michfb.com/YoungFarmer or call 517-679-5444.