Spread the Word: UF/IFAS Extension Peanut Butter Challenge Kicks Off October 1

By Meaghan Goepferich Posted on September 27, 2021

UF/IFAS Extension’s annual collection for local food pantries, The Peanut Butter Challenge, kicks off on Friday, October 1, 2021. Fresh jars of peanut butter can be donated to Citrus County Extension office, located at 3650 W Sovereign Path, Lecanto, from Friday, October 1 through Wednesday, November 24, 2021.

Spread the Word: UF/IFAS Extension Peanut Butter Challenge Kicks Off October 1

Coordinated by UF/IFAS Citrus County Extension, a competition among counties – for bragging rights only – was conceived to help feed hungry families ahead of the holidays, in addition to promoting a Florida-grown crop. The peanut, which is produced mainly throughout the northern regions of the state, contributed $119 million to the state’s economy in 2019, according to the Florida Agricultural Statistics Service. Peanut butter is an ever-popular item in food pantries for its nutrient density and shelf stability.

In addition to the community donations, the Florida Peanut Producers Association (FPPA) and Florida Peanut Federation (FPF) have partnered with the project for years. These organizations will again contribute to the totals distributed to food pantries.

The project took on new meaning last year, as demand for food bank assistance had increased as an economic effect of the COVID-19 pandemic. The latest numbers from the United States Department of Agriculture shows food insecurity affected roughly one in 10 Floridians in 2020.

During the 2020 Peanut Butter Challenge, participating UF/IFAS Extension County offices donated over 27,000 total pounds of peanut butter to area pantries. “We were impressed and touched by the communities’ grassroots support for area families and the community food banks that help support them,” said Stephanie McMinds, UF/IFAS Extension Citrus County’s challenge coordinator.

To partner with Citrus County’s collection this year, call 352-527-5700. Follow along on social media at https://www.facebook.com/UFIFASExtCitrus.

The mission of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) is to develop knowledge relevant to agricultural, human and natural resources and to make that knowledge available to sustain and enhance the quality of human life throughout the state.


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