In the United States, processed food products with added sugar and salt are often more affordable than nutrient-rich foods like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. For this reason those of us with limited material resources find it easier to fill up on calorie-dense food that does not contain the varied nutrients our bodies need.
The Most Needed Foods List suggestions listed here will help guide you in providing the most healthful donation for our neighbors who need it most.
Foods Unsuitable for Donation
Kindly note that we CANNOT distribute the following:
- Foods canned/pickled/preserved at home.
- Foods in sharply dented, swollen, bulging, leaking or rusted cans.
- Bulk foods that have been repackaged.
- Foods in containers without labels.
- Foods in opened or torn containers exposing the food to potential contamination.
- Foods with an “off” odor or foods that show any other signs of spoilage (browning, discolored, slimy layer).
- “Distressed” foods = foods that have been exposed to fire, flooding, excessive heat, smoke, radiation, other environmental contamination.
- Foods that have been recalled for potential health risks.
Information on Food Dating
Before you donate food that is past it’s best by or best if used by or sell by date take some time to learn about package dates first here. As you’ll learn, most food is perfectly good to eat weeks, months, and even years past those dates! Knowing this, Manna does share food past date. Here’s a guide to how long past date we’ll distribute commonly donated items:
- Baking Mixes – 8 months
- Dry Beans and Nuts – 1 year
- Cereal and Crackers – 1 to 2 years
- Uncooked Rice/Pasta – 1 to 2 years
- Canned High-Acid Foods (peaches, tomatoes, juice, etc.) – 12 to 18 months
- Canned Low-Acid Foods (meat and vegetables) – 2 to 3 years
- Food in Glass/Plastic Jars – 2 to 3 years