National Hunger Action Month: High Holiday Food Drive Donation Guidelines

National Hunger Action Month is a time to raise awareness to hunger in our community and this year it occurs during the High Holidays!  Currently, more than 250 households depend on the Jewish Family Service Food Pantry for supplemental food each month, including emergency/crisis requests. The Pantry distributes more than 6,000 pounds of non-perishable foods monthly. As we prepare for the High Holiday and synagogue food drives please follow the below guidelines regarding food donations.

All food donations should be newly purchased. Please avoid donating glass containers that can break in transport or during processing. Our average household size is 2-3 members and many of our clients are over the age of 65 so keep this in mind when choosing the serving size and physical weight of items. Gift cards are also accepted as they allow us to shop for items that the Pantry may need or has run low on at any given time. Here’s a list of the most requested food items:

  • Canned vegetables (especially Low Salt/Sodium or No Salt/Sodium added ) such as green peas, corn, green beans, spinach or collards, carrots, olives, mush-rooms, beets, canned potatoes, asparagus, artichokes, sauerkraut, yams.
  • Canned Fruits or fruit cups (especially those in water or light syrup/no sugar added) such as applesauce, mandarin oranges, pineapple (all types), pears, mixed fruit, peaches. 
  • Canned beans or dry beans (chickpeas, black beans, split pea – yellow and green, lentils, white beans, kid-ney or red beans, pink beans, black-eyed peas, pigeon peas, cannellini beans).
  • Boxed Pasta (angel hair, fettuccini, shells, bowties, rigatoni, orzo, pastina, ditalini, penne, ziti, bagged egg noodles) 
  • Pasta sauce in cans or plastic jars 
  • Juice boxes for kids
  • Boxed oatmeal 
  • Cereal
  • Fish (white tuna in water); tuna fish in pouches; Sardines
  • Microwavable rice (in cups or envelopes)
  • Canned meals such as chili, chicken, stew
  • Canned Pasta such as Chef Boy-ar-dee
  • Soups (canned and microwavable containers) 
  • Broth (chicken, vegetable, beef, organic)

For health and safety reasons we cannot accept any expired items, items past their best by and sell-by date; expired items; open containers; homemade items; or any items without a label. All donations must be checked ahead of time. All synagogue donation drop-offs must be pre-scheduled.

For more information, please contact 


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