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July 10, 2014

Food for Peace Celebrates 60 Years

For more information on Newsline, contact: Kari Barbic, Media Specialist, American Farm Bureau Federation, karib@fb.org.

July marks the 60th anniversary of the beginning of the Food for Peace program, which originated in Kansas. Seanica Otterby has the story.
OtterbyIn 1953, Cheyenne County Farm Bureau member Peter O’Brien in Kansas suggested giving countries devastated by World War II aid in the form of food rather than money. That’s how Kansas Farm Bureau Senior Editor John Schlageck says the Food for Peace program was started.
SchlageckIn 1954, our Kansas Senator Andy Schoeppel sponsored legislation that became known as Food for Peace. It passed in both Houses of Congress, and it was signed into law by Kansas’ own President Dwight D. Eisenhower. And Ike saw the devastation and he saw the hungry people.
OtterbySince 1954, Schlageck says Food for Peace has provided food assistance to more than 3 billion people in more than 150 countries.
SchlageckIn 2013, 1.1 million metric tons of food that was valued at approximately 1.4 billion dollars was sent to 46 different countries. This also provided 577 million dollars in grants to another 29 countries for local and regional purchase of food commodities.
OtterbyFarm Bureau understands using food for humanitarian relief helps everyone, according to Schlageck.
SchlageckThere’s still millions of people around the world that go to bed hungry every day, so it’s a really wonderful thing that can happen as long as Congress provides the money for this. Hopefully it will have a long, healthy life and continue to provide food for the hungry mouths of people all around the world.
OtterbySenators Debbie Stabenow and Thad Cochran joined Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and others at a dinner last night in honor of the Food for Peace program. Seanica Otterby, Washington.

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