(UNION SPRINGS, Alabama) – Food insecurity has more than doubled since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. At the same time, more than 20 million Americans planted a vegetable garden for the first time as people explored new hobbies at home. A new national survey by Bonnie Plants finds that while only half of home gardeners use all the food they grow, just 10 percent know how to connect with organizations to donate their extra harvest.
“Many people don’t realize that you can donate the extra food from your garden directly to local food pantries,” said Mike Sutterer, Bonnie Plants President and CEO. “Most gardeners end up with extra zucchini, cucumber, tomatoes that they don’t know what to do with, and if all of these gardeners donated just a bag or two of vegetables, we could make a significant impact on food insecurity nationwide.”
Bonnie has partnered with AmpleHarvest.org, a nonprofit that connects gardeners with over 9,000 partner food pantries based on their ZIP code. Together through the Grow More. Feed More. initiative, they are encouraging home gardeners to plant a little extra this season and donate their surplus to help feed their neighbors and support their communities.
“While the economic hardships brought on by COVID-19 certainly exacerbated the problem, food insecurity in this country isn’t going away after the pandemic ends,” Sutterer said. “Our goal is to make donating their surplus harvest a ritual for millions of gardeners across the country.”
Bonnieplants.com will donate five percent of their online plant sales through July to AmpleHarvest.org. To find a food pantry near you and donate your extra food to those who need it most, visit AmpleHarvest.org.