When do I put out the food? On May 11th, just set out your non-perishable food well before your letter carrier’s normal pick-up time. The earlier the better! Note that he or she will be delivering and collecting mail as usual, on top of collecting food donations, so that pickup time could be slightly later than usual. Your letter carrier might also have helpers. A good rule of thumb is to have the bags by your mailbox by 9 a.m.
What if it’s raining/snowing/random bad weather? You’ve heard of the Postal Service’s unofficial motto: Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds. So, of course your letter carrier will pick up and deliver your mail as usual on Food Drive Day, no matter what the weather may be. Note that plastic bags tend to hold up better in wet weather. If your jurisdiction has banned plastic bags, then consider using a reusable shopping bag instead. And most plastic bags are recyclable.
Does my food donation stay local? Yes—all food stays in your local community. It’s not shipped off to some regional distribution center hundreds of miles away. If you want to know where your donation is going, call your local post officeand ask to speak to your local food drive person.
What do you mean by “non-perishable food?” The top requested non-perishable food items are: cereal, pasta, pasta sauce or spaghetti sauce, rice, canned fruits and vegetables, canned meals (such as soups, chili and pasta), 100% juice, peanut butter, macaroni & cheese, canned protein (tuna, chicken and turkey), beans (canned or dry). You also can donate healthy, low-sodium, low-sugar items such as beans, oatmeal and other whole grains, and canola or olive oil.
Is there anything I shouldn’t donate? Please do not donate frozen food, homemade food or home-canned items. Please do not donate items that have expired or are in glass containers. In keeping with good food-handling and food-safety procedures, food that is opened, damaged, out of code or does not have the official ingredients included will be discarded by the food bank in the sorting process.