This fall, farmers throughout the area will donate bushels of grain as a fundraiser for the River Bend Food Bank through the program “Bushels for Hunger.”

This fall, farmers throughout the area will donate bushels of grain as a fundraiser for the River Bend Food Bank through the program “Bushels for Hunger.”

Farmers often bring harvested corn and soybeans to nearby grain elevators to be sold or for storage. When they unload the crop, the elevator clerk will ask if the farmer would like to donate bushels of grain to fight hunger. All of the grain donated will be sold and the money earned will be donated to the River Bend Foodbank.

“There are 120,000 people who don’t have enough food to live an active, healthy lifestyle in eastern Iowa and western Illinois,” said Mike Miller, president and CEO of River Bend Foodbank. “That’s one in eight people, and it’s one in five children. River Bend Foodbank distributes over 12 million meals annually to these people, and Bushels for Hunger has been an important supporter of these efforts, providing what we hope will reach one million meals this year. The program is an excellent example of how by working together we can solve hunger.”

“As a farmer, it’s hard for me to see people in our community wonder how they are going to get their next meal, it’s especially hard to see children and the elderly go hungry,” said Jeff Kirwan, Illinois Farm Bureau District 3 director. “Every day, I work to grow healthy, safe food. Today, I’m donating part of my harvest to make sure that food gets to people in need.” 

“Bushels for Hunger is an important program because there are many families in needof help in the local area. With support from area farmers, this program can provide many meals to those within our communities who need help the most,” said Chad Bell, Illinois Farm Bureau Young Leader representative.  

According to Gary Hoff, University of Illinois Extension Taxation Specialist, the tax advantages of donating commodities far outweigh those for a contribution of cash. A cash donation is made from the sale proceeds of the grain. Therefore, the sale is reported on Schedule F and is included in both taxable income and self-employment income.

The elevators participating in Bushels for Hunger are ADM Grain, Atkinson Grain, Big River Resources, Cargill, CHS, Gold Star FS, Hillsdale Elevator, Michlig Grain, River Gulf Grain, River Valley Cooperative, and Rumbold & Kuhn.

The Bushels for Hunger program will continue until Jan. 31. To learn more about the donation, contact the Henry, Rock Island, Mercer, Stark or Whiteside County Farm Bureaus.