Iowa's contributions to the worldwide fight against hunger topped $9.38 million between October 2009 and October 2010, with food donations of more than 18.6 million pounds and volunteered hours totaling nearly 540,000.
The annual announcement was made to the 500 attendees at the 4th annual Iowa Hunger Summit during the event's "Hunger Luncheon" where guests were served meals used by Iowa-based organizations in food assistance and hunger-relief efforts in Iowa, such as an easy-chew Meals on Wheels meal, and around the world, such as amaranth ugali, a Tanzanian cooked porridge made from amaranth grain through a development partnership based in Indianola, Iowa.
The annual numbers tallied by Iowa Hunger Summit officials have continued to grow each year. In 2009, totals contributed were $8.72 million, 15.6 million pounds of food and 451,000 volunteer hours.
Farm Bureau will sponsor the Hunger Summit for next 5 years
Also growing is support for the Hunger Summit itself: the Iowa Farm Bureau announced their sponsorship of the event for the next five years. With aims to enhance public attention to both causes of and solutions to hunger, the sponsorship will allow the Iowa Hunger Summit to continue to celebrate and encourage increased action and partnership among Iowans to solve issues related to hunger, poverty and malnutrition.
To this effect, the "Hunger Luncheon" featured a keynote address by Ambassador Tony Hall, director of the Alliance to End Hunger and three-time Nobel Peace Prize nominee. Afternoon sessions included a variety of hands-on, interactive breakout sessions sponsored by Bread for the World, Des Moines Area Religious Council, Foods Resource Bank, the Iowa Food Bank Association and ONE. In the morning, attendees listened to three food security and nutrition presentations from Elanco and Heifer International; Heartland Global Health Consortium; and Iowa State University Extension and the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture.