Southeast Missouri Food Bank receives 40,000 pounds of chicken, $25K grant

SIKESTON, Mo. (KBSI) – Tyson Foods gave a $25,000 grant to Southeast Missouri Food Bank and donated 40,000 pounds of chicken to help families facing food insecurity.

“We are so excited to receive these donations from Tyson Foods,” said Joey Keys, chief executive officer of the food bank. “We hear from people we serve that they often can’t afford healthy proteins like chicken at grocery stores. Protein is also among the most expensive for the food bank to purchase. We’re thrilled Tyson is making it possible for southeast Missouri families to receive this nutritious food.”

According a study conducted by the University of Missouri in 2021, 64 percent of people visiting food pantries in southeast Missouri said they purchased the least expensive food, even if they knew it was not the healthiest. That study also found more than 50 percent of households had a least one member with a significant health issue, including diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure.

“We know our efforts are stronger through collaboration, and we’re proud to support Southeast Missouri Food Bank and its mission to end hunger,” said Brian Crowe, senior manager, live operations of Tyson Foods in Dexter. “Enabling our partners to address food insecurity and provide nutritious, quality food to the broader community is critical to Tyson Foods.”

The grant funds will be used to support mobile food distributions throughout the rest of the year in Stoddard and Dunklin counties. Those counties rank in the top 20 counties for food insecurity in the state. The mobile food pantries funded by Tyson will include increased amounts of healthy produce and lean protein.

Dates and times for the Tyson-funded mobiles can be found on the food bank’s website at semofoodbank.org.

Southeast Missouri Food Bank provides food to 140 food pantries, soup kitchens, and shelters in 16 southeast Missouri counties. They include Bollinger, Butler, Cape Girardeau, Carter, Dunklin, Madison, Mississippi, New Madrid, Pemiscot, Perry, Reynolds, Ripley, Scott, Ste. Genevieve, Stoddard, and Wayne counties. The food bank also provides mobile food distributions, monthly boxes of food to eligible seniors and weekend backpacks of food to 1,200 in 31 school districts. The mission of Southeast Missouri Food Bank is to end hunger and leverage the power of food to build a healthy community. The food bank is affiliated with Feeding America, the nation’s largest food bank network, and has received the highest possible rating from Charity Navigator, attesting to its adherence to best practices. Those interested in helping can do so by making a tax-deductible contribution, donating food, or volunteering.

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