PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – SEPTA and Philabundance are asking public transit users to donate non-perishable food in historic amounts.

The third annual “Stop Hunger at Your Station” food drive begins Monday, June 6th and runs through the 20th. The haul from year two was double year one and they’d like to double it again.

septa food wide ost dl SEPTA, Philabundance Hope To Double Last Year’s Food Donations

SEPTA GM Joe Casey (at lectern) and Philabundance President Bill Clark (in blue shirt) announce goal of this year's "Stop Hunger at Your Station) food drive. (Credit: John Ostapkovich)

SEPTA GM Joe Casey went off-script of a press release by raising the bar again considerably.  Catie Wolfgang, the City’s Chief Service Officer says, “I ask everyone in meeting Mr. Casey’s challenge that we double last year’s outcome. That’s only going to happen if each one of us talks to your neighbor, talk to your coworker, talk to your friend and make sure that no man, woman, child, elderly person in Philadelphia is hungry this summer or this year.”

Bill Clark, Philabundance president, says there’s a double-whammy affecting food banks: less in, more out, “Retailers actually sell the dented cans, the crushed cartons, in the bargain bins, behind in the back of the store, so our supplies have been dropping close to 60%.  In the face of that, the need in the community is up over 20% this year.”

Clark says Philabundance gets a tremendous amount of imported fresh fruits and vegetables, so it’s the non-perishables it needs for pantry shelves. He says clients really value tuna and peanut butter as high protein items but if it’s non-perishable and edible, it’s welcome.

Collection barrels will be at dozens of SEPTA stations.

Reported by John OStapkovich, KYW Newsradio 1060

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