The food pantry is growing in healthier food options

3 months 1 week 6 days ago Wednesday, March 07 2018 Mar 7, 2018 Wednesday, March 07, 2018 6:41:00 PM CST March 07, 2018 in News
By: Sana Moore, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - The Food Bank for Central and Northeast Missouri is doing more to encourage people to eat their vegetables.

Executive director Lindsay Lopez said the food bank’s goal is to improve the lives of the people it serves with the introduction to new food items. She said, in 2017, 61 percent of donated food consisted of healthier food options.

”Produce is expensive, so the fact that we are able to acquire and distribute that to the people that we serve is really incredible,” she said.

Central Food Pantry manager Sean Ross said he’s not only seen an increase in the amount of food, but also in the amount of people who want it.

“We have been making it a conscious effort to increase the amount of produce we give out and so now we distribute about a million pounds of fruit and vegetables a year,” Ross said.

Food banks started more than 50 years ago focusing on non-perishable items like boxed and canned goods. Lopez said it was just three years ago the food bank decided to go a different route and use produced items like dairy, whole grain, fruits and vegetables.

“We really want to ultimately improve the quality of the food that we are distributing, so that we can improve the quality of the lives of the people we serve.” she said.

Ross said, to increase the amount of fresh produce people can receive, the pantry allows for people to come in more than just once a month for the fruit and vegetables.

“It’s important because the healthier food leads to healthier people, and healthier people are just more happy, their more productive, they’re more fun to be around.” the Central Food Pantry manager, he said.

Ross said squash is one of the most popular items at the pantry.

“We used to get a lot of different squashes in the fall and people just didn’t know what they were so we made up a poster that basically had a picture of each one and told what it was. It even had some suggestions on how to cook each one and so now when we get squash it hardly lasts at all.” he said.

Ross said its rewarding seeing people try foods they normally wouldn’t eat.

“It feels really good. It feels good, especially because I’ve seen an increase myself in things people were less familiar with, and over time, as we offer it more and more, they become familiar with it,” Ross said.

Lopez said the food bank also helps reduce food costs for people it serves. 

“If we are able to provide these fresh quality options to them in terms of their food then it frees them up to spend their resources on other things that they need,” Lopez said.

Lopez said, going forward, the food bank wants to continue to educate the public about the importance of healthier food options at pantries. She said money is one way to help out.

“For every one dollar we take in we can turn around and purchase 21 dollars worth of groceries. So we can take those dollars and turn them directly into highly nutritious foods,” she said.

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - Columbia’s City Channel was recently recognized for creative excellence in production by The Telly Awards Judging Council. Producers... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 6:43:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — One Wyandotte County sheriff's deputy is dead and one is in critical condition after... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 6:04:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
MILLER COUNTY- Investigators say the human remains they found in Miller County on Monday are from a male from the... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 4:48:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
FULTON - The two caregivers responsible for Carl DeBrodie will remain in jail after Judge Kevin Crane denied their bond... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 3:53:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - If a few more details with the Federal Highway Administration are worked out, MoDOT plans to close the... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 3:33:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY — The Missouri Department of Economic Development announced on Friday five companies are expanding in Missouri with plans... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 3:30:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - APLEX, Inc., the contractor of the city’s Bike Boulevard Project, plans to close the entrance to Alexander... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 2:54:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
LAKE OF THE OZARKS - While many people cringed when the National Weather Service issued a heat advisory for this... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 2:32:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - After a contract between the Jefferson City government and New World Recycling ended Friday, all nine of... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 2:30:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Former Governor Eric Greitens’ attorneys said Friday they will pursue payment from the state after officials said... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 1:39:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
QULIN (AP) — A 3-year-old girl is safe after spending the night in a rural Missouri cornfield, her faithful... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 1:06:04 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
WASHINGTON (AP) — A company run by former officials at Cambridge Analytica, the political consulting firm brought down by a... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 11:46:01 AM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump's former campaign chairman is going to jail. Paul Manafort was ordered into... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 11:06:00 AM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
MACON COUNTY - Authorities released details Friday of the arrests of three people Wednesday on suspicion of marijuana distribution. ... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 11:04:00 AM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — The Missouri State Board of Education on Thursday reapproved six charter schools in its first... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 7:02:00 AM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- Renowned physicist Stephen Hawking spent his life teaching the world about space, so it is only fitting that... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 5:46:00 AM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The city of Columbia hopes to start a project to improve the water supply to MU's Women's and... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 4:57:00 AM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — The private attorneys who represented former Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens' office against potential... More >>
5 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 4:22:00 AM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 70°
8pm 75°
9pm 73°
10pm 72°
11pm 72°