Grocery stores partner with food bank to Check Out Hunger this holiday season

Grocery stores partner with food bank to Check Out Hunger this holiday season

November 14, 2016

18th annual retail campaign for Ozarks Food Harvest runs through Dec. 31

SPRINGFIELD, Mo.— Nearly sixty southwest Missouri grocery stores are teaming up with Ozarks Food Harvest to help Check Out Hunger for the Ozarks during the 18th annual fundraiser that began yesterday and continues until Dec. 31.

Check Out Hunger gives shoppers the opportunity to add a $1, $3 or $5 tax-free donation to their grocery bill when checking out at area retailers, including Akin’s Natural Foods, Bistro Market, Country Mart, Harter House, Hy-Vee, King Cash Saver, Murfin’s Market, Pennington’s Supermarket, Price Cutter, Price Cutter Plus, Ramey, Rhodes Family Price Chopper, Summer Fresh and Woods Supermarket.

Shoppers will know if their local grocer is participating by looking for Check Out Hunger signs in the check-out lanes. When a customer chooses to add a donation to his or her grocery bill, the cashier simply scans the donation barcode and the donor signs a paper apple for display. The tax-free gift is added to the bill and appears on the receipt.

In the 28 counties Ozarks Food Harvest serves, 261,000 individuals receive food assistance. Many of these individuals are food insecure, meaning they don’t know where they will receive their next meal. In southwest Missouri, one in four children struggle with food insecurity.

“There’s a huge need in southwest Missouri for food assistance. Ozarks Food Harvest is committed to doing all we can to make sure no one goes hungry, but we need community support to make that happen,” said Bart Brown, president/CEO of Ozarks Food Harvest. “Check Out Hunger is an way to give back and make a big impact this holiday season.”

The 2015 fundraiser collected $31,763 — the equivalent of nearly 159,000 meals. Since 1998, the holiday campaign has collected $418,882 — providing nearly 2.1 million meals. Every dollar raised through the Check Out Hunger fundraiser will provide five meals to hungry children, families and seniors this holiday season.