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20 tons of potatoes come through MO to help eastern NC, locals

DISTRIBUTION - Trucks lined up here are from a variety of food pantry operations across Eastern North Carolina who participated in last week’s distribution of 40,000 pounds of white potatoes to stocks distribution shelves. It is an End Hunger project of the Society of St. Andrew, whose director, Michael Binger, lives in Mount Olive. His wife is minister of the First United Methodist Church here. (photo by WILLIAM HOLLOMAN)
By William Holloman
Staff Writer

The Society of St. Andrew’s End Hunger Program across North and South Carolina kicked off a major contribution effort here in Mount Olive last week, at the Carver Cultural Center on South Breazeale Avenue.
The Director of the Society of St. Andrew for North and South Carolina is Michael Binger. He and his wife, Marti, who is minister of the First United Methodist Church of Mount Olive, are residents here.

Representatives from food pantry operations throughout Eastern North Carolina were here with trucks to share 40,000 pounds of white potatoes that were being provided by the Society. It is a food rescue and distribution ministry, Binger said.

He said the potatoes are donated by farmers, and many made available at last Wednesday’s event came from the farm fields of both Wayne and Duplin Counties. Representatives from Eastern North Carolina food banks, soup kitchens, food pantries, low-income housing areas, churches, and other hunger agencies for distribution to the poor participated. Binger said some came from as far away as Jacksonville.

He said the potato and produce project is successful and extremely cost effective for two reasons: the food is donated and distributed through a cooperative effort to not duplicate other projects. Society volunteers were also on hand. The only cost to the Society, Binger noted, is for transportation to the distribution site and packaging at a minimal expense of 7.2 cents per pound.

A portion of the potato distribution went to the soup kitchen operated at the Carver Center by Danny King.
Binger said about a third of the 40,000 pounds of potatoes went to the Jacksonville area, another third to the Fayetteville area, and the remaining third will stay in the Mount Olive area.
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