The Ricchiuti family's donation of a packing line will allow the Central California Food Bank break down and distribute bulk shipments of fresh produce. ( Courtesy Central California Food Bank )

The Ricchiuti family, whose brands include P-R Farms and the Enzo Olive Oil Co., Clovis, Calif., has donated a packing line to the Central California Food Bank.

The former apricot packing line will enhance the food bank’s ability to pack foods, alleviating volunteer labor and reducing spoilage, according to a news release. The center doesn’t have the ability to sort through all food donated because a lot of it is bulk. The packing line, however, will allow volunteers at the food bank to break down bulk produce into appropriate-sized bags to distribute, according to the release.

Fresno State engineering students, under the direction of professor Nguyen, will be modifying the packing line to meet the food bank’s needs. The project should be completed by the summer, when high volumes of produce are donated. San Parnagian of Fowler Packing, and Baloian Farms is also assisting in the project, according to the release.

“Since moving to their new building in 2018, Central California Food Bank has dreamt of housing a pack line for produce,” according to the release. “The staff is extremely grateful for the generosity of the Ricchiuti family and their dedication to ending hunger here in Central California.

“Additionally, there is much gratitude for the engineering department at California State University-Fresno for the time, energy, and motivation in tackling this project,” according to the release.