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Havre Food Bank giving away milk


April 15, 2020

The Havre Community Food Bank is handing out free milk this week, due to donations from a local business and state milk producers.

Food Bank Manager Samantha Nimmick said the food bank received more than 3,000 lbs. of milk from Gary & Leo’s Fresh Foods as well as more than 60 gallons from the Montana Food Bank Network Sunday, April 5 and Monday, April 6.

The food bank distributed milk Tuesday and will again Thursday and Friday, from from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. each day.

Gary & Leo’s store’s co-owner and manager Tracy Job said the store had an overstock of milk that would have outdated before it had a chance to sell it.

“Instead of lowering the price to move it out, we decided to donate it to the food bank this time because there are more folks than usual  in our community that are in need of help,” he said.

Montana Food Bank Network Chief Executive Officer Gayle Carlson said the food bank network received about 12,000 gallons of milk from Meadowgold and area Hutterite colonies.  

“We work with 167 local pantries, one of which is the Havre Food Bank,” she said, “They, and other pantries around the state received a portion of the dairy donation.”

Nimmick said the food bank has received milk that has hit its sell by date but is not spoiled.

“We have skim, 1 percent, 2 percent and whole milk in quarts, half gallons and gallons,”she said.  “The idea of having to throw out any of the milk is extremely depressing when I know there are so many people in need and the milk could last so much longer if people could take it home and freeze it.”

She added that the food bank will be distributing the milk until Friday or when it’s gone.

       Last week, the food bank gave away more than 300 gallons of milk, she said. 

  “I love being able to help our community and I truly believe in the Food Bank’s mission,” Nimmick said. 

   The Food Bank’s mission statement, she said, is “Food and Nutrition equals well being.” 

   Nutrition is an integral part of health and wellbeing both physically and mentally, she added. 

“I believe access to food is absolutely essential to maintaining a healthy sustainable community,” she said. 

Due to the current social distancing guidelines, Nimmick said, the Havre Food Bank is limited to only three staff and volunteers in the building at a time and are not allowing any customers into the food bank at this time.

She said customers should knock on the front door on the west and wait at the end of the ramp for a representative to assist them. 

People who are unable to pick up the milk between 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday or Friday can contact the food bank during business hours at 265-2007 to set up another time to pick it up or contact District 4 Human Resources District Council after hours at 265-6743.

The food bank also is continuing its regular work with some other additions.

“We are providing one box of perishable items per household per week, she added. “These consist of recently donated fruits, vegetables, and dairy items as well as bread and other baked goods when available.”

The food bank is also continuing to provide food boxes on a bimonthly basis, but is now allowing for three emergency boxes outside regularly scheduled boxes as needed, she said, adding that the boxes are made up of shelf-stable foods such as cereal, canned beans, ramen, macaroni and cheese, soup, rice, canned fruits and vegetables, peanut butter and more.

The food bank has also started opening Wednesdays for seniors only, she said.


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