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Donation honors National Peanut Month

To honor March as National Peanut Month, the Virginia Peanut Board and Virginia Peanut Growers Association have again teamed with Peanut Proud to contribute peanut butter to the Federation of Virginia Food Banks, a partner state association of Feeding America.

National Peanut Month is an opportunity to recognize the versatility of the humble peanut. From Virginia’s famous gourmet peanuts to inshells to peanut butter, a diverse variety of products are made from peanuts or use them as an ingredient. This is mainly due to the important nutritional attributes that peanuts provide. A peanut butter sandwich, so simple to make, is packed with protein, vitamins, minerals, folate and other benefits for the body.

This will be the 10th year that Virginia’s peanut growers have contributed at least two pallets (2,880 jars) to kick off the March celebration. This year, the donation increased significantly with a five-pallet (7,200 jars) contribution from Peanut Proud, an industry sponsored charitable organization that reacts to existing needs, whether it be for food banks in the peanut growing states or disaster relief. Peanut Proud was also involved with the Virginia Peanut Growers’ donation during each of the last six years.

Virginia’s seven regional food banks will distribute the peanut butter throughout their network of 1,500 pantries, soup kitchens and other partner agencies.

“Peanut butter is at the top of the list of needed products for most food banks,” said Dell Cotton, executive secretary of the Virginia Peanut Growers Association. “The nutritional benefits of our industry’s most popular product makes it a necessity for the people who are served by food banks. I hope others will follow our lead and contribute much needed food items, including peanut butter, to their local food relief organization.”

“Protein is the most requested food group among the 860,000 food insecure Virginians that we serve,” said Eddie Oliver, executive director of the Federation of Virginia Food Banks. “Partnerships like this one with Virginia’s peanut industry are critical to our on-going efforts to stock our pantries with nutritious food items.”

The Federation of Virginia Food Banks is a nonprofit state association of food banks affiliated with Feeding America and is the largest hunger-relief network in the state. Composed of the seven regional Virginia/Washington D.C. food banks, the Federation supports the food banks in providing food, funding, education, advocacy throughout the commonwealth.