Ag Dept., FFA to collect donations at Farm Show

Staff Writer
Echo Pilot

 Current and former members of Pennsylvania's FFA Association will team with the Department of Agriculture to help feed the hungry by holding a food drive on Monday, Jan. 10, as part of the 2011 PA Farm Show.

Farm Show visitors are asked to donate non-perishable food items as part of the “Stock the Trailer” campaign. Donation trailers-sponsored by Shetron Trailer Sales from Cumberland County-will be located in the Cameron Street circle and the Maclay Street parking area near the entrances to the Farm Show Complex.

Collection bins will also be located inside the Cameron Street entrance and at the department's exhibition booth in the Main Hall.

Agriculture Secretary Russell C. Redding said this year's campaign marks the second year FFA members have sponsored the drive and he hopes the 2011 effort tops that of the 2010 Farm Show.

“During last year's food drive, Farm Show attendees and FFA members donated more than 3,000 pounds of food,” said Redding. “That was an incredible amount and I'm hoping the nearly half million people who are expected to attend the Farm Show this year are just as generous.

“The Pennsylvania FFA members are to be commended for this effort. They have truly embodied the last line of their motto, 'Living to Serve,' through their hard work in organizing this food drive.”

All donated food will be given to the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank, which distributes more than 15 million pounds of food and groceries each year to more than 500 soup kitchens, food pantries and shelters. The food bank provides assistance to an average 36,800 people weekly, with nearly a third of those served under the age of 18.

Redding said the FFA will continue collecting donations as part of the “Stock the Trailer” campaign throughout the year during upcoming state conferences.

The Pennsylvania Farm Show is the largest indoor agricultural event in the nation, featuring nearly 6,000 animals, 10,000 competitive exhibits and 290 commercial exhibitors. The show runs Jan. 8-15 at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex and Expo Center in Harrisburg. Admission is free and parking is $10. Visit for details.

For more information about the “Stock the Trailer” campaign, contact Mike Brammer, executive manager of the Pennsylvania FFA Association, at 717-705-9551.