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09/23/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 09/23/2021 09:41

FEDS FEED FAMILIES: Commissaries lead DOD’s record-breaking donation effort to food banks nationwide

FEDS FEED FAMILIES: Commissaries lead DOD's record-breaking donation effort to food banks nationwide

By Mike Perron, DeCA public affairs specialist

September 23, 2021

FORT LEE, Va. - The federal government's annual Feds Feed Families campaign has ended with just over 7.5 million pounds of food being donated to food banks across the nation.

The campaign was conducted June 1 through Aug. 31 this year for federal workers, and commissary customers and Defense Commissary Agency (DeCA) employees who wanted to donate to local food banks and pantries.

The Department of Defense's share of the total donations this year was 3.7 million pounds - an increase of more than 45 percent from last year. DeCA's share of that was 2.4 million pounds, or 66 percent of DOD's total.

This is the second year that DOD designated DeCA leader of the campaign for the Department, said Randy Eller, the agency's director of logistics.

"We're proud to take the lead for a campaign held across the entire Department of Defense," said Eller. "It really demonstrates the Department's commitment to helping people in need, as well as the generosity of commissary employees and patrons."

Participating military installations helped collect items most needed by food pantries and then donate them to area food banks. Commissary customers and employees had a couple of ways to participate:

  • by purchasing needed food and personal hygiene products for donation while shopping at stateside commissaries, or bringing items from home and placing them in donation bins at the store
  • by purchasing prepackaged donation bags available in stateside commissaries for less than $10

Once collected, installation officials worked with the commissary to deliver the donations to local food banks.

"The annual Feds Feed Families food drive is a great way for commissaries and military families to give back to the communities that host us around the nation," said Marine Sgt. Maj. Michael R. Saucedo, senior enlisted advisor to DeCA's director. "The summer months typically see food bank donations fall, so it's the perfect time to set aside a few items to donate. A little goes a long way!"

For more information on the annual campaign, visit the U.S. Department of Agriculture's website.

-DeCA-

Photo caption: Commissary customers could purchase prepackaged donation bags for less than $10 available in stateside commissaries like these shown from Fort Lee, Virginia, store. Participating military installations help collect items most needed by food pantries and then donate them to area food banks. (DeCA photo)

About DeCA:The Defense Commissary Agency operates a worldwide chain of commissaries providing groceries to military personnel, retirees and their families in a safe and secure shopping environment. Commissaries provide a military benefit, saving authorized patrons thousands of dollars annually on their purchases compared to similar products at commercial retailers. The discounted prices include a 5-percent surcharge, which covers the costs of building new commissaries and modernizing existing ones. A core military family support element, and a valued part of military pay and benefits, commissaries contribute to family readiness, enhance the quality of life for America's military and their families, and help recruit and retain the best and brightest men and women to serve their country.