Texas peanut producers encourage Texans to donate peanut butter and help Stamp Out Hunger on Saturday, May 8. The food drive will provide assistance to the one in six Americans who struggle with hunger.

To participate in the food drive, simply leave donations of non-perishable food items such as peanut butter next to your mailbox prior to the time of your regular mail delivery on May 8. Your local letter carriers will do the rest, collecting the donations and delivering them to food banks, pantries and shelters in your community.

“Peanut butter is the perfect item for food drives because it’s packed with protein, energy and over 30 essential nutrients,” Larry Don Womack, chairman of the Texas Peanut Producers Board (TPPB), said. “This is a great opportunity for Texans to help out those in need in our local communities. And when we purchase peanut butter for drives like this, we’re helping the peanut farmers who contribute to the state’s economy, as well as helping those in need of nutritious food products.”

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s annual study on food security in the United States, hunger affects 49.1 million Americans, including 16.7 million children.

Since the annual food drive’s inception in 1993, Stamp Out Hunger has collected more than one billion pounds of food. Last year, a record of more than 73.4 million pounds of food was collected and donated to the nation’s food banks.

Peanut farmers are doing their part to help combat hunger. Earlier this year, TPPB teamed with members of the U.S. peanut industry, as well as agricultural partners and individuals, in donating more than 233,000 pounds of peanut butter to the Peanut Butter for Haiti project. The project donated peanut butter to various charities in Haiti following the country’s devastating earthquake earlier this year – helping prevent major hunger in the country.

A recent survey conducted by Feeding America, the nation’s largest hunger relief organization, found its 203 food bank members consistently reported increased demand for emergency food assistance. The nation’s food banks notoriously suffer from shortages during the summer months, having depleted the supply of donations received from holiday food drives. Donations are even more critical, as many children in need no longer have the benefit of their school lunch program over the summer.

The 18th annual Stamp Out Hunger food drive provides an excellent opportunity to donate one of the best sources of protein in America’s pantries – peanut butter. For more information about how you can participate in the food drive or to find out if your local mail carrier is participating, visit www.helpstampouthunger.com.