The Ellsworth American   Thursday May 2, 2013  by Jennifer Osborne

The Tree of Life Food Pantry has gotten souped up.  Amy’s Kitchen, a manufacturer of organic canned soup, based in Petaluma, Calif., has donated 13,248 cans of organic soup to the pantry. The soup was delivered last week and unloaded and stocked by about 15 volunteers. “We would never be able to purchase this soup, which would retail for over $40,000,” said Rick Traub, a pantry board member. “This represents about a year’s supply of soup and should save the pantry about $7,000 over the next 12 months.” In other news, a partnership that began last year between the pantry and local farmers will continue this year. The pantry received a $2,000 grant from Good Shepherd Food Bank and a $2,500 grant from Maine Farmland Trust to contract with local farms to grow produce, which will be given to pantry families. The farms, which are all located in Penobscot, include Horsepower, Blue Zee, King Hill and Del Rio. Traub explained that the grants will provide support to everyone involved. Families will benefit from receiving free, fresh, organic produce. Money that the Tree of Life would normally spend on produce will be freed up to purchase other food, Traub said. Farmers will be able to plant additional crops knowing that a portion of their income is guaranteed before the season begins.

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