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Thursday, May 11, 2006

Recycle and renew

This Saturday, May 13, letter carriers in more than 10,000 cities and towns across America will collect non-perishable food items donated by customers. They will be participating in the 14th annual National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) Food Drive—the largest annual one-day food drive in the world. Postal employees in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and the Virgin Islands will collect food and deliver it to local community food banks, pantries and shelters.

The annual food drive comes just before the onset of the hurricane season and it is also a reminder that it's time to check the provisions in those emergency evacuation kits. Non-perishable food items that have been stored for 6 months or less now need to be replaced. If you read our article Planning for disaster last season you probably have a ready list of those emergency staples most of which will be dried, preserved, highly nutritional items such as aseptically packaged milk, juice and tofu or dehydrated vegetables,potatoess or meats sealed in foil. Most of these items have a recommended shelf life of 6 months or more so now is the time to use them and replace with a fresh supply.

Now, you can happily serve the stored items along with regular meals over the next few days or, as we've done, add them to the canned goods and other non-perishables that you donate to the Letter Carrier's Food Drive.

Make certain the the food items are still within their expiration dates and that the packages have not been damaged while in storage. That's all there is to it, you have recycled a valuable resource to a worthy, local cause, saved some effort and made a necessary step toward revitalizing your emergency kit.

All the items from our kit shown above will go to the Carriers drive and the replacment items came to less than $25.00, enough meals for two adults for seven days including snacks.

Greener Magazine

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