Terrell families in need of fresh produce will have opportunities in the coming weeks to pick up a 17-pound box of fruits, vegetables and beans.

The Farmers to Families Food Box program begins Friday and continues Saturday. The program is expected to be ongoing for the next several weeks.

Terrell First Assembly Adopt-a-Block is partnering with Tanger Outlet Center, J.S. Helwig & Son Trucking & Star Transit to host a produce distribution event from 8-11 a.m. Friday at Tanger Outlet Center, 301 Tanger Dr. in Terrell. A similar distribution occurs at 9 a.m. Saturday at Rafter J Cowboy Church, which is just across from Buc-ee’s at 10701 Country Road 305.

No pre-registration is required.

The produce is donated by the USDA Farmers to Families Food Box program, which provides fresh produce to families in need.  Each box contains about 17 pounds of apples, potatoes, onions, oranges, carrots and pinto beans.

More than 1,200 boxes were available for distribution at Adopt-a-Block event. At the Rafter J Cowboy Church food giveaway, the first 500 families will be served.

The distribution is expected to continue for several weeks with the same schedule at both locations.

As part of the Coronavirus Farm Assistance Program, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced on April 17 that USDA is exercising authority under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act to purchase and distribute agricultural products to those in need. Through this program, USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is partnering with national, regional and local suppliers, whose workforce has been significantly impacted by the closure of restaurants, hotels and other food service businesses, to purchase up to $3 billion in fresh produce, dairy and meat products. The program will purchase $461 million in fresh fruits and vegetables, $317 million in a variety of dairy products, $258 million in meat products and $175 million in a combination box of fresh produce, dairy or meat products. Suppliers will package these products totaling $1.2 billion into family-sized boxes, then transport them to food banks, community and faith-based organizations, and other non-profits serving Americans in need from May 15 through June 30, 2020. AMS may elect to extend the period of performance of the contracts, via option periods, dependent upon program success and available remaining funds, up to $3 billion.

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