Celebrate National Canned Food Month with a food drive

Did you know that February is National Canned Food Month? Most of us don’t spend a lot of time analyzing and appreciating the steel cans lining our pantry shelves that hold our staple food, but at St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance, they are fundamental in our mission to alleviate hunger in Arizona.

Metal cans have been around for more than 200 years as an environmentally friendly, economical and safe packaging form for food.

History of the can

The history of the metal food can is traced back to 1795 when Napoleon was systematically taking over Europe. He offered a prize of 12,000 francs to anyone who could invent a method of preserving food for its army and navy, and in 1809 Nicolas Appert succeeded, winning the prize money.

Environmental impacts

Metal food cans are 100 percent recyclable and can actually be recycled over and over again without losing strength or quality. And every ton of recycled steel saves 2,500 pounds of iron ore, 1,000 pounds of coal and 40 pounds of limestone.

Nutrition and Safety

The canning process delivers long-term food quality and product shelf life. Canned fruits and vegetables are picked and packed at the peak of ripeness, and since most canneries are located just a few miles from the field, food freshness is guaranteed. Once the cans are sealed and heat processed, the food maintains its high quality for more than two years.

The metal food can enjoys an unparalleled safety record. Tamper-resistant and tamper-evident packaging gives consumers peace of mind knowing that their food is packaged safely and securely.

Get involved

Help us celebrate National Canned Food Month by hosting a canned food drive to help feed Arizonans in need. We especially need canned tuna, chicken, vegetables, beans and soup.

To sign up to host a food drive, click here.

Source: Can Manufacturers Institute

Looking for Ham for the Holidays? How about a 6-8lb Shank for $5?

If you haven’t tried St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance’s Value Marketplace yet, this is the week to check it out.

How about a 6-8 pound Cook’s Shank or butt portion ham for just $5.00? Or boneless, skinless chicken breasts for just $1.75 a pound? (other specials listed above)

The Value Marketplace is a self-sustaining program open to everyone that is designed to help families trying to stretch their food budgets as far as possible. All the food is purchased by St. Mary’s Food Bank using its buying power to pass the savings on to you. Along with all of our great meat specials, you can find lots of non-perishable items to fill your pantry in addition to fresh produce, breads and other items. Value Marketplace accepts SNAP vouchers in addition to cash and is designed to help both families on assistance as well as those just looking to save on common items.

Value Market place is open weekdays from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. in the lower level of the University of Phoenix Programs Center (3003 W. Thomas), just west of the Albertsons Bistro.  Give it a try and see what you think. It might become a regular stop!