Produce boxes plentiful in Pratt

Jennifer Stultz
Pratt Tribune
Pratt volunteers Anel Cox and Stephanie Becker load free produce boxes into vehicles at the Pratt Community Center, one of several food distribution points in the past few days in Pratt.

Bags and boxes of produce seem to be showing up recently all around Pratt. Last week, the Pratt Community Center was ground zero for more than 500 large boxes of free fruits and vegetables, available for pickup by anyone needing such items. This week the Pratt Food Bank has produce boxes of fresh fruits and vegetables to give away.

“We have 5# bags of potatoes and apples. We have tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, yellow squash and Jalapeno peppers,” said food bank director Diana Harris.

Today, Reach Church volunteers passed out more than 900 boxes of produce, free for the taking at 1000 E. 6th St., Pratt.

According to U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue the food is coming from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Farmers to Families Food Box Program has distributed over 50 million food boxes in support of American farmers and families affected by the COVID-19 pandemic all over the country. Pratt is not alone in experiencing the bounty of Kansas-grown produce.

“The delivery of 50 million food boxes has helped an incredible number of Americans in need,” said Secretary Perdue. “I couldn’t be prouder of the great job done by the food box program staff and the many farmers, distributors and non-profits that helped to get this program off the ground for the American people. The Farmers to Families Food Box Program delivered over 35.5 million boxes in the first 45 days, and has now reached over 50 million boxes delivered – a testament to everyone’s hard work.”

I have been meeting with food banks and recipients across the country and it’s been heartening to hear all the positive feedback on how the program has saved businesses and fed Americans in need. We are well into the second round of deliveries and we’re working harder than ever to continue to build on the success of the program.”