( File photo )

The Produce Marketing Association’s Fresh Summit expo was a boon to Anaheim, Calif.-area feeding programs with 228,400 pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables going to Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County.

Food bank volunteers collected the bounty from the expo show floor at the Anaheim Convention Center, according to a PMA news release. It took 24 trucks to load the 576 pallets of fresh produce, which Second Harvest distributed to more than 300 of its community partners, according to Harald Herrmann, CEO of Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County.

“Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County truly appreciates the partnership and support of the Produce Marketing Association and the produce industry, collaborating to achieve one of the largest produce rescue operations in our food bank’s history,” Herrmann said in the release.

The donation provided the equivalent of 190,365 meals, according to Jason Hatcher, senior sourcing manager for the food bank.

PMA’s donation of produce from Fresh Summit exhibitors is an annual tradition. The association has worked with food banks in Fresh Summit cities since 1983, and more than four million pounds have been donated in the past 14 years, according to the release.

“It’s an expression of this industry’s commitment to growing a healthier world and an expression of the industry’s commitment to sustainability knowing high quality, healthy food will nourish people rather than go to waste,” PMA CEO Cathy Burns said in the release.

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