JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Despite signs of economic recovery, record numbers of families in North Florida and across America are currently relying on food assistance. In fact, one in eight Americans will receive help in 2012 from food banks. And among the most needed items are sources of high quality protein.
Jacksonville’s own Dixie Egg Company is donated more than 72,000 eggs to Second Harvest North Florida on Thursday, March 29, to help families struggling with food insecurity.
Dixie Egg Company’s donation is part of a national effort, organized by the United Egg Producers and Feeding America. For the fifth consecutive spring, America’s egg farmers are giving the Easter Bunny and families in need, a helping hand by donating nearly 10 million fresh eggs. That brings the number of eggs farmers have contributed since 2008 to 60 million.
“Dixie Egg Farm is a third generation family business and we are proud to be partnering with the Second Harvest North Florida to provide much needed protein to the most needy in our community, especially during the Easter holiday season," said Jacques Klempf of Dixie Egg Company.
For food banks across America, high quality sources of protein, such as eggs, are especially needed and valued. According to the USDA, one large egg delivers six grams of protein, along with 13 essential nutrients, including choline, folate, iron and zinc. After a review of the nutrient composition of standard large eggs last year, USDA concluded that the average amount of cholesterol was 14 percent lower, and vitamin D content was 64 percent higher, than previously measured.
More than 342,000 individuals in the Second Harvest service area are deemed to be “food insecure” – which means they might not be hungry, but they also don’t know when they will eat again.
“If you’ve ever met an egg farmer, you know just how incredibly generous and giving these men and women are,” said Gene Gregory, president of United Egg Producers. “All year long, but especially at Easter, they proudly do what they can to support the communities in which they live and work.”
PHOTO CAPTION: (Top) Second Harvest Executive Director Bruce Ganger, left, and Dixie Egg Company President and Chairman Jacques Klempf.