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For Release: Thursday, March 5, 2020

DEC Delivers Food, 'BYOBagNY' Reusable Bags to FeedMore WNY

Delivery Includes 400 Reusable #BYOBagNY Bags and 237 Pounds of Food Collected during DEC Region 9 Employee Food Drive

In support of New York's ban on single-use plastic bags that began March 1, State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Region 9 staff delivered reusable bags and donated food on Wednesday, March 4, to FeedMore WNY, the agency that recently joined together the Food Bank of WNY and Meals on Wheels for WNY.

"DEC is pleased to deliver 400 reusable bags along with more than 230 pounds of food to support FeedMore WNY's critical mission that combats hunger across Buffalo and Western New York," said Abby Snyder, DEC Region 9 Director. "I'm proud of the generosity exhibited by our regional DEC staff who collaborated with an office food drive that led to today's donation. The reusable bags will also directly assist the area's population in carrying their food to their homes."

The reusable BYOBagNY (Bring Your Own Bag New York) delivery supports DEC's ongoing campaign to encourage New Yorkers to use reusable bags wherever and whenever they shop. DEC is currently distributing hundreds of thousands of reusable bags across the state, with a focus on low- and moderate-income New Yorkers with the help of partner state agencies, Feeding New York State, regional food bank organizations, and other stakeholders.

"FeedMore WNY is thrilled to have this generous donation of food and reusable bags from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. We will distribute this nutritious food to our partner food pantries that serve our hungry community members," Catherine Shick, communications director for FeedMore WNY, said. "The reusable bags will be a great help to those who rely on our agencies and Mobile Food Pantry program for food assistance. They will provide our neighbors in need with a convenient and environmentally-friendly way to carry their groceries home."

The food was collected as part of DEC's Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Statewide Food Drive. Region 9 collected 237 pounds of food to benefit FeedMore WNY as part of the multi-month effort. FeedMore WNY assists 129,000 individuals through 300 agencies and programs that include food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, group homes, snack programs, camps and child and adult day cares throughout Erie, Niagara, Chautauqua and Cattaraugus counties.

DEC will continue to focus its outreach and education efforts to ensure a smooth transition for consumers and affected retailers. Governor Andrew M. Cuomo signed legislation to ban the sale of single-use plastic bags in New York State on Earth Day, April 22, 2019.

About FeedMore WNY

FeedMore WNY offers dignity, hope and a brighter future by providing nutritious food, friendship and skills training to its Western New York neighbors in need. Through its Food Bank Distribution Center and partner hunger-relief agencies, as well as its Meals on Wheels and other targeted feeding programs, FeedMore WNY alleviates hunger and assists community members of all ages throughout Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie and Niagara counties. More information can be found at FeedMore WNY's website.

DEC staffer hands off BYOBagNY bag filled with goods to Catherine Shick BYOBagNY reusable bags filled with food donations
Photos courtesy of NYS DEC. DEC Region 9 Forester Nate Morey presented @feedmorewny's Catherine Shick today with 237 pounds of food collected by DEC employees during an office food drive along with 400 reusable #BYOBagNY bags at FeedMore WNY's #Buffalo warehouse.

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