Iowans are reminded to leave cans of food by their mailboxes today (Saturday) as part of the Stamp Out Hunger effort. Webster City Postmaster Harley Tapper says letter carriers will be picking up the non-perishable food items and delivering them to the nearest food bank, pantry or shelter.

Tapper says it’s the 21st annual event. “Nationwide, it’s gone on longer than it has in certain communities,” Tapper says.

“Not every community, it started off at the local branch in one facility and it’s just exploded over the years.” This is the nation’s largest single-day food drive, involving 175,000 letter carriers in 10,000 communities across the U.S.

Tapper says the project has grown over the years. “Nationally, there’s millions and millions of pounds of food collected and donated to the area food banks and different community organizations,” Tapper says.

“It’s a very worthwhile cause.” Last year, Americans donated more than 70-million pounds of food through the program, while the effort has collected more than one-billion pounds of food since its inception in 1993.

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By Pat Powers, KQWC, Webster City