Dedicated to helping the Lansing community and beyond, more than 100 employees from Michigan Farm Bureau (MFB) and Farm Bureau Insurance (FBI) picked 6,608 pounds of apples at the Country Mill near Charlotte Oct. 29 for donation to the Greater Lansing Food Bank.
Volunteering their normal work hours on a blustery autumn day, Farm Bureau staff spent the afternoon like thousands of their farmer members and clients around the state—working to bring in this year's crop.
From donating fresh vegetables to various fundraising efforts, Michigan farmers have been feeding their less fortunate neighbors all year long through Harvest for All, a partnership between MFB's Young Farmer and Promotion and Education committees and the Food Bank Council of Michigan. Harvest for All fights hunger statewide through donations of non-perishable food products, volunteer time, money and surplus agricultural commodities to local food banks or agencies.
"Michigan farmers have been very generous in helping their local communities," said MFB Chief Operating Officer Scott Piggott. "Our members gifts of time, resources and commodities to Harvest for All are a testament to their humility and desire to make a difference to people in need."
Embracing their ties to the state's prodigious food and farm sector, staff from both companies pitched in to support farmers' charitable efforts. The fruit harvested will be distributed through the Greater Lansing Food Bank, which serves Clare, Clinton, Eaton, Gratiot, Ingham, Isabella and Shiawassee counties.
"The Farm Bureau Family of Companies is dedicated to helping the communities in our great state—Michigan is our home," said Farm Bureau Insurance CEO Jim Robinson. "With staggering statistics that indicate that one in four children just in mid-Michigan go to bed hungry, we want to do our part to help. With great programs like Harvest for All and local partners like Country Mill, our family of companies help raise awareness of the fight against hunger by supporting the Greater Lansing Food Bank.
Harvest for All's 2015 campaign concludes annual reporting Oct. 31. In addition to local donations, young farmer members ages 18-35 will receive matching funds from Invest an Acre to donate $2,000 to each of the state's seven regional food banks, as well as more than $9,000 to the Kids Food Basket organization.
Last year Harvest for All contributed more than two tons of nonperishable food items, 159 tons of surplus commodities and $26,000 to local food banks and agencies statewide.
Country Mill will host another charity event Nov. 1, Pick a Peck for People. The public is invited to pick apples for donation to the Greater Lansing Food Bank, and receive in turn a complimentary hayride or corn maze ticket.
About Michigan Farm Bureau: Established in 1919, Michigan Farm Bureau is the state's largest farm organization, representing farms of all sizes and commodity types. For more information, visit michfb.com or call 517-323-7000.
About Farm Bureau Insurance: Farm Bureau Insurance of Michigan was founded in 1949 by Michigan farmers who wanted an insurance company that worked as hard as they did. Farm Bureau Insurance agents across Michigan provide a full range of insurance services—life, home, auto, farm, business, retirement, Lake Estate®, and more—protecting nearly 500,000 Michigan policyholders. For more information, visit farmbureauinsurance.com or call 517-323-7000.
About Greater Lansing Food Bank: GLFB is a non-profit organizations that provides food to individuals in mid-Michigan. Started in 1981, its mission is to partner to alleviate hunger one meal at a time. For more information, visit greaterlansingfoodbank.org or call 517-853-7800.
About Country Mill: A family owned and operated orchard, Country Mill is a u-pick orchard, farm market and cider mill. The Tennes family strives to provide an environment for family fun on the farm. For more information, visit countrymill.com or call 517-543-1019.