Farm Bureau marks 8th Food Check-Out Day
From Staff Reports

Hopkins-Rains County Farm Bureau President Fred Moseley (right) presents a donation to Sue Hawkins-McClure, who accepts the checks for the Northeast Texas Food Bank and Meal-A-Day Center, as part of the farm bureau's Food Check-Out Day, which falls on Thursday.
Staff Photo By Ricky Russell

Feb. 6, 2004 -- If it takes the average American more than three months of work just to pay their tax, how long could it take to pay for a year's supply of food?

According to Texas Farm Bureau, it's probably a lot less than one would think.

The farm bureau is helping Texas farmers and food charities across Texas celebrate the eighth annual Food Check-Out Day on Thursday, Feb 5.

Locally, the Hopkins-Rains County Farm Bureau is marking the event with donations to the Northeast Texas Food Bank and the Meal-A-Day Center. Meal-A-Day provides meals for the elderly and shut-ins Monday through Friday, and the food bank provides low-cost food for people in need.

Food Check-Out Day is based on statistics of the U.S. Department of Agriculture and is symbolic of the date when the average American earns enough income to pay for a year's supply of food. According to USDA, Americans spend an average of 10 percent of their disposable income on food. For that "average American," this is accomplished less than 40 days into the year. By comparison, most Americans work more than 100 days to pay state, federal and local taxes. This year's Food Check-Out Day is 36 days into the year, which indicates a drop in the already affordable price of food, despite trends that reveal Americans are dining out more and purchasing more expensive and exotic foods to cook at home.

County Farm Bureaus across Texas are partnering with the Ronald McDonald House and other local charities promoting special Food Check-Out Day events, including food drives and school visits encouraging agriculture education.

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