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Commissaries collect nearly 740,000 pounds

FORT LEE, Va. -- Commissary customers and employees came together to donate nearly 740,000 pounds of needed items to local food banks and other charitable organizations during the annual Feds Feed Families campaign.

The accomplishment, a 10 percent increase over last year's effort, was done as commissaries again served as collection points on their installations.

"Commissary customers and employees showed with their actions the importance they place on giving back to their local communities," said DeCA Director and CEO Joseph H. Jeu. "Even during times of economic uncertainty, our customers and employees still try to make sure their communities have what they need."

In 2012, more than 660,000 pounds of items were collected and donated through commissary collection points. DeCA, as an agency, collected 30 percent of the Department of Defense's 2012 total donations. During the 2013 campaign, DeCA collected about 40 percent of DOD's total donations.

This year, the DeCA total of 739,611 pounds represents a 10 percent increase. Both years, commissaries also sold prepared donation packages, allowing customers to purchase the package and then drop it in donation bins as they left the store.

At many installations across the country the commissaries' industry partners donated manpower and transportation to deliver the donated items from commissaries to local food banks.

One installation - Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas - donated more than 10,000 pounds to their local food banks this year. That's a dramatic increase over last year when 480 pounds were collected at the commissary.

"Our customers have really embraced this program," said Jeu. "And our military communities have demonstrated their noble character through their generosity."

-DeCA-