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MANNA Message
A newsletter for MANNA FoodBank Partners
                     FEBRUARY 2014                             
January Client Data Survey
Click on this link to go to the January 2014 client data survey:
Please submit overdue reports and data to our office by February 20th to prevent your shopping privileges from being suspended. If you have questions about the monthly survey, please contact Katy German at
 Want to Know if MANNA will be Closed During Inclement Weather?

  • Call MANNA after 6:30 am at (828)299-3663.
  • When you hear the recorded message, dial 2-2-5.
Agency Reminders
Keep MANNA informed about  your current distribution hours!  Contact us as soon as changes have been made to your distribution so that we can update our records.
We have a lot of folks visiting the distribution floor throughout the week.  Thank you for remembering the shopping floor rules: Up to 3 approved persons are allowed to shop per agency. Each agency has 1.5 hours to shop.
Produce, bread and perishables can be picked up Monday through Friday from 1-3 pm. Even if you've already had an appointment!  Call Erica at MANNA  (828) 299-3663 x236 prior to travel  to ask what produce is available.
     Take all you can carry- There is no limit on produce, bread, and bakery!
 Grants and other Resources 
New Workshops From WNC NonProfit Pathways Are Now Listed Online:

salvages fruits and vegetables that have already been picked and cannot be sold for various reasons. - See more at:
The Society of St. Andrew, a hunger relief organization based in Virginia, began the Gleaning Network in 1988. - See more at:
  The Society of St. Andrew, a hunger relief organization based in Virginia, began the Gleaning Network in 1988. - See more at:
  The Society of St. Andrew, a hunger relief organization based in Virginia, began the Gleaning Network in 1988. - See more at:
Did You Know?
USDA to Provide Additional Support to Food Banks, Soup Kitchens, and Food Pantries Across the Country
Last week, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced the USDA's intent to purchase up to $126.4 million worth of fruit and vegetable products, to be distributed to needy families under The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP). The products to be purchased include tart cherries, processed apples, cranberries, fresh tomatoes, wild blueberries, and raisins. This purchase will expand efforts to provide high-quality, wholesome, domestically-produced foods to support low-income families in need of emergency food assistance.
Find Healthy, Low-Cost Recipes for Clients on the SNAP (Food Stamp) Ed-Connection Page
The SNAP-Ed Connection Recipe Finder is a database of recipes for use by nutrition educators working with the SNAP eligible population. Find the USDA Recipe Finder and other data bases at:
Upcoming Community Events

Council on Aging Announces Upcoming Free Services to the Public
Free Tax Assistance Begins February 1
AARP Foundation Tax-Aide, in cooperation with the I.R.S, N.C. Dept. of Revenue, Buncombe County Library System and Council on Aging, Inc. will again offer free tax preparations for taxpayers with low - and moderate- income with special attention to those age 60 and older. This service will be available from February 1, 2014 through April 15, 2014.
Medicare Choices Made Easy, Classes Start January 31
The Council on Aging in conjunction with Senior Health Insurance Information Program (SHIIP) announces classes, Medicare Choices Made Easy, for the first quarter of 2014. The classes will explain how Medicare works, the enrollment process, how to avoid penalties and ways that beneficiaries might save money. The classes are free and open to the public.
Call the Council on Aging at (828)277-8288 for information about times and locations of the classes and to reserve your place. 
Winter Markets Continue to Provide Fresh and Local Produce
For a complete listing of Active Winter Markets within your area click on the ASAP link or visit
MANNA Produce Spotlight
The word "pineapple" was first used in 1398 in reference to a pine cone. It is derived from the Spanish word "piña" which means pine cone. This was changed nearly 300 years later with the word "pine cone" being introduced so pineapple could be used exclusively for the fruit.
Although originally from South America, most of the world's pineapples now come from Southeast Asia. Thailand is said to be the biggest producer of pineapples in the region.
Pineapples can be cut and prepared in a variety of ways. Regardless of how you proceed, the first step is to remove the crown and the base of the fruit with a sharp knife. Two slices of pineapple provides half of your daily fruit requirement.
source King of Fruits, Australia
We Want to Hear From You!
Do you have a volunteer story, recipe, photograph from your agency or general good news you'd like to share on the monthly MANNA Message? Submit your ideas before the end of each month to Ana Baranda
Contact Us
MANNA FoodBank, Asheville
Agency Services Fax
Business Office Fax
Leigh Pettus - Chief of Programs & Agency Relations
828-299-3663 x230
Katy German - Data and Compliance Coordinator
828-299-3663 x234
Jason Turnbull - FNS Program Manager
828-299-3663 x254
Amy Meier - FNS Outreach Associate
Eastern Zone
(Madison, Yancey Mitchell, Avery, McDowell)
Emily Miller- Eastern Zone Outreach Coordinator
Central Zone
(Haywood, Transylvania, Henderson, Polk)
Phil Carland - Central Zone Outreach Coordinator
Western Zone
(Cherokee, Graham, Clay, Swain, Macon, Jackson)
Jennifer Trippe - Western Zone Outreach Coordinator
Ella Kliger - Western Zone Outreach Associate 828-545-6688
 Other Key MANNA Staff
Cindy Threlkeld - Executive Director
Glenda Gragg - Distribution Coordinator
(product availability and agency shopping)
Pat Williams - Product Planning Coordinator (Accounts Receivable, TEFAP)
Jill Hanson - Chief Operating Officer
Becky Upham - Communications Director
Let's work together to keep the mobile delivery trucks running on schedule!  We'll do our best to depart on time from each drop site.  We need you to help by doing the following:
  • Make sure someone is there to meet the truck
  • Make sure you have enough folks on hand to handle your order
  • Do not ask the drivers to sort or shelf your items
Remember, once the food is off the MANNA truck it is your responsibility.  Please do not ask the drivers to sort your items or bring them into your facilities.  If you need help with this, look into getting some more volunteers on hand to meet the trucks.  You can also call your Zone Coordinator to discuss your need for additional volunteers. 
Food Safety Training for Meal Providers
Full ServSafe Certification is now required for all on-site meal providers. Contact abaranda@mannafoodbank for more information.
ServSafe for Nutrition at ABTech in Enka
Mar 25-26
8:30 am - 5:30 pm
Cost: $70, plus $ for booklets
On-site meal partners can also arrange for local trainings through their local cooperative extension offices.  Please remember to send a copy of your certificate of completion to MANNA. 
For Pantries and Produce Markets:
Online Safe Food Handler Training: Only $15 to register, is valid for three years and can be completed online from a home or office computer. For more information on how how to register visit the pdf instruction page:online-fst-option-flyer.pdf
VISTAs Looking Ahead

MANNA has been fortunate to work with AmeriCorps/ VISTA this year, year one of a three-year capacity building project with our pantry partner agencies in counties outside of Buncombe County.
Mariah Auman, Rachel Fifer, and Spencer Cranfill will complete their year of VISTA service on February 14, 2014. We salute their passion, dedication, and hard work and thank them and all of the pantries they have worked with since last February, to pave the way for a bright future for our network of pantries and the clients they serve!
MANNA Recognizes 2013's
Produce Pioneers
Largest increase in produce, percent 
compared to the 2012 year
Hendersonville Seventh Day Adventist Church-        5,203% Asheville
WNCGH- Montford Group Home- Asheville               3,612%
Avery County Group Home- Newland                      2,009%
Irene Wortham Center, Inc- Asheville                     1,985% 
Neighbors in Need, Inc- Marshall                            1,804%
Most Produce Overall in 2013
Anchor Baptist Church- Pisgah Forest                658,880 lbs
Community Bible Church/ The Market at the Point - Cullowhee                                                        92,040 lbs
Clinchfield United Methodist Church- Marion        87,893 lbs
Bounty and Soul Fresh Market- Black Mountain    73,565 lbs
McDowell Mission Ministries- Marion                    63,441 lbs
TEFAP and SNAP Items
TEFAP Eligible Agencies: Clients are only allowed to pick up and receive TEFAP foods one time per week at an individual pantry. Depending on when pantries are open, clients can alternate between pantries as long as they only pick up TEFAP foods one time per week.
Currently Available to TEFAP-Eligible Pantries 
  • Applesauce        Green Beans    Peanut Butter      
  • Orange Juice      Pears              Black Eye Peas
  • UHT Milk            Oats                Green Peas     
  • Whole Turkeys   Chicken Leg Quarters    
New Additions to SNAP Selection Available February Through Mid-March 
  • Mac & Cheese      Corn        Carrots    Green Beans    
  • White Rice          Chunk Chicken
  • Ramen Noodles (chicken flavor) 
Free Cooking Demos at MANNA!
Chef Mark Christopher and Sous Chef Dabney demonstrate ways to shop, prepare, and cook MANNA produce in a style that is easy, efficient and tasty at Laurel's Kitchen every month! Stop by MANNA on the Chef's next visit- a couple of lucky visitors will even be able to sample a MANNA produce-inspired lunch.
The Chef is also visiting partner agencies and preparing cooking demos for clients. For more information on how to bring Mark Christopher to your agency or upcoming distribution contact
Chef Mark Christopher's next visits:
 Tuesday, March 4th
Wednesday, April 2nd
8am to 12:30pm at Laurel's Kitchen. Attendance is free.
Above: A selection of dishes prepared at Laurel's Kitchen on December 5th, including Cuban Stew.
God's Way Food Pantry in Balsam Grove
February Featured Agency
Rachel Fifer- VISTA Central Zone Capacity Consultant
Lydia Perry is the director at God’s Way Food Pantry in Balsam Grove. Pantries across western North Carolina are realizing that they can’t keep up with increasing need and are looking for ways to alter their approach. In a recent interview she explains that she has seen a more than 100% increase in clients coming to their pantry since just last year, but by creating programs that directly support individuals’ independence, God’s Way is trying to decrease the community’s dependence on their food pantry and move their community towards a more self-empowered way of living.
God’s Way began holding canning classes because “resource programs aren’t really available when you’re 25 miles from a community that has those resources,” Lydia points out. Due to the resulting transportation obstacles often experienced in rural areas, they soon “opted to try a mentoring program,” Lydia explains, that matches an “experienced home economist—or  preservationist—to someone who wanted to learn.” Partners could use either person’s home or the church kitchen, which had been certified for community use. God’s Way established a Canner List of people so that whenever the church had surplus food that might go to waste, they could ask these new canners to come in and help preserve it, with recipients of this canned food being  their own family, neighbors, or the pantry.
God’s Way also started Gardening Projects a couple years ago, in which people “made application, and committed to having a garden that they would tend, and then that became food supply for their family and any excess…could be donated back to the community.” God’s Way stepped up to help people hunt for jobs, complete applications for work and education, create resumes, and adjust budgets.
“There is a sense of self-sufficiency and independence that’s been a part of the culture in these communities for hundreds of years,” Lydia explains. People’s “ability to retain their self-respect became a priority for us.”
Lydia emphasizes that it’s about more than food. “It really became very apparent that relationships were built out of these mentoring programs. These people were crossing community lines. Those…became long-lasting relationships, which went way beyond the scope of that education process.” Everyone involved has a real increased sense of community.
“Even in our distributions,” says Lydia, “I see a general attitude of life improvement. Because even though I may have to come pick up food because my family is in need this week, there are things I’m doing that are going to make life for my family better. And that type of mindset helps people to move forward.”
I for one, am amazed and inspired by Lydia’s efforts to empower her community to be simultaneously more self-sufficient and more interconnected with neighbors. This is just one of many hopeful steps forward. May we all find inspiration in it, to continue our work to end hunger in each of our communities.

Mobile Schedule Feb-Mar 2014
Note: an asterisk (*) means a change to the usual schedule due to a MANNA holiday closing.
                                4      T       Henderson-Polk
5      W      Madison
6      Th     Cherokee-Clay
7      F       Mitchell-Yancey
11     T      Macon-Jackson
12     W     Haywood-Swain-Graham
13    Th     McDowell-Avery
14     F      Transylvania
18    T       Henderson-Polk
19     W     Madison
20    Th     Cherokee-Clay
21     F      Mitchell-Yancey
25    T       Macon-Jackson
26     W     Haywood-Swain-Graham
27    Th     McDowell-Avery
28     F      Transylvania
4     T     Henderson-Polk
5     W    Madison
6     Th   Cherokee-Clay
7     F     Mitchell-Yancey
11   T     Macon-Jackson
12   W    Haywood-Swain-Graham
13   Th   McDowell-Avery
14    F    Transylvania
18    T    Henderson-Polk
19   W    Madison
20   Th   Cherokee-Clay
21    F    Mitchell-Yancey
25    T    Macon-Jackson
26    W   Haywood-Swain-Graham
27   Th   McDowell-Avery
28    F    Transylvania
MANNA FoodBank • 627 Swannanoa River Road • Asheville, NC 28805
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