Jeff Rutledge and Arkansas Rice Federation, Foodbank membersat rice donation event Arkansas Rice Federation
Rice industry stakeholders after Monday's donation included Arkansas Rice Council President Jeff Rutledge and daughter Claire, Miss Arkansas Rice Shelby Bosnick, Arkansas Foodbank CEO Rhonda Sanders and Arkansas Foodbank Board members.

Arkansas Foodbank receives 152,000-plus pounds of rice

Arkansas rice industry members donate enough rice to provide 1 million servings for hungry residents.

The Arkansas rice industry donated 152,600 pounds of rice to the Arkansas Food Bank Monday (Sept. 11) The donation in honor of National Rice Month will provide over a million servings of rice to help feed families, children, and seniors all across the state.

The donation came from Cormier Rice Mill of DeWitt; Windmill Rice Company of Jonesboro; Riceland Foods, Inc. of Stuttgart; Producers Rice Mill of Stuttgart; Riviana Foods of Carlisle; and Specialty Rice, Inc. of Brinkley.

“The Arkansas rice industry is committed to being good stewards of our resources and helping to alleviate hunger in our state,” Arkansas Rice Council President Jeff Rutledge said. "We take great pride in our partnership with the Arkansas Foodbank and appreciate their efforts to feed our hungry neighbors."

September is also Hunger Action Month. More than 549,000 Arkansans struggle with hunger and may not know where they'll find their next meal. That number includes one in four children who may not have enough to eat. This rice donation will go in to weekend backpacks for children, food boxes for home-bound seniors and will fill the shelves at food pantries for families in need.

The rice will be distributed across the state to the five Feeding America food banks: River Valley Regional Food Bank in Ft Smith; Food Bank of Northeast Arkansas in Jonesboro; Harvest Regional Food Bank in Texarkana; Arkansas Foodbank in Little Rock; and Northwest Arkansas Food Bank in Springdale

“During National Rice Month, not only do we recognize the amazing work the rice industry does for our state’s economy but also the pivotal role Arkansas rice farmers play in the fight against hunger,” said Rhonda Sanders, Arkansas Foodbank CEO. “We are so pleased to continue to have this great partnership to give nutritious rice grown right here in Arkansas.”

Also on Monday, Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson proclaimed September as “Rice Month” in ceremonies in Little Rock. Hutchinson visited with attendees about recent flooding and upcoming issues for the industry.

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