The following is a commentary by Secretary Randy Romanski of the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.
As we prepare for the Thanksgiving holiday, and as we reflect on what we are each thankful for, we also have the opportunity to give. Thanksgiving marks the beginning of a happy holiday season for many. However, to some, the holidays serve as a reminder that they do not have enough to feed their families.
As you consider what you are thankful for this November, I encourage you to consider giving as you are able. Farmers give every day to produce nutritious products for consumers across the state and world. Processors and packaging staff give to ensure there are safe and nutritious products available. Retailers give as they work to stock their shelves with everything you need to feed your families. As consumers, we trade our hard-earned dollars for these products at the store, but some may want to go one step further to give as well.
I recently toured the Oshkosh Area Community Pantry and participated in a turkey distribution event. It was heartening to see staff, volunteers, and community members working together to ensure there was dignity and care in how the patrons, who are experiencing food insecurity, received needed sustenance.
Governor Evers has continually supported Wisconsin’s agriculture industry and food-insecure residents. This support has helped countless food distribution centers invest in their infrastructure and pay Wisconsin producers for food procurement. While at the pantry, I was able to see the infrastructure supported through the Governor’s investments including the Oshkosh pantry’s refrigerated truck and improvements to their walk-in cooler and freezer that will better preserve food, much of which comes from Wisconsin sources and will go to patrons of the pantry.
Many of us are lucky enough to put food on the table for our families this holiday season. On Thanksgiving, and as you give thanks this season, consider giving to those who are in need. Whether you donate food to your local food pantry, volunteer for an organization close to your heart, or select a charitable organization to support a specific cause, your donation gives others the opportunity to give thanks.