Feds Feed Families tops food drive goal

Tuesday - 11/2/2010, 4:55pm EDT

OPM Director John Berry (far left) congratulates Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack (third from right) and USDA staff for collecting the most food among large federal agencies in the Feds Feed Families charity food drive ceremony at USDA headquarters." (Photo by Max Cacas, Federal News Radio)

By Max Cacas
Reporter
Federal News Radio

The federal agency with primary responsibility for the nation's food supply has come out on top in the "friendly competition" to collect food for families in need. Nationwide, federal workers collected or donated a total of 1.7 million pounds of food in the "Feds Feed Families" effort, surpassing the original 1.2 million pound goal set earlier this year.

The Department of Agriculture collected 432,384 pounds of food over the summer, almost doubling the amount gathered by the agency a year ago. USDA led the "top agency" category, beating the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Homeland Security.

Among medium-sized agencies, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration led the Office of Personnel Management and the Department of Housing and Urban Development in food collection. The Federal Communications Commission led small agencies like the Small Business Administration and the Peace Corps in their collection efforts.

"Federal employees are big-hearted people," said Office of Personnel Management Director John Berry at a ceremony marking the end of the charity food drive held at the USDA office in Washington. "They care about their communities, and they care about their neighbors. They care about people in their communities who are in need."

In an effort to draw more contributions to the Feds Feed Families drive this past summer, Berry participated in events such as a dunk tank at the Department of Energy here in Washington.

Food collected by agencies in the Washington, D.C., area is being distributed by the Capitol Area Food Bank.

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