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Postal food drive breaks ’08 levels

Letter carriers throughout Hampton Roads collected 157,487 pounds of food to benefit both the Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia and the Foodbank of the Virginian Peninsula during their recent Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive.

Of the total, Suffolk and Smithfield carriers contributed 9,635 pounds of food, well over the 7,711 pounds collected in 2008. The Hampton Roads total also was slightly higher than it had been last year, according to Post Office spokesperson Fran Sansone.

The drive was part of an annual campaign by the National Association of Letter Carriers. Suffolk’s members have been participating each year since 1991.

The drive took place nationwide, with carriers in more than 10,000 cities and towns across the nation participating.

Last year, more than 73 million pounds of food were collected across the country, bringing the total for the first 16 years of the program to 909 million pounds.

Postal patrons were asked to leave non-perishable food items next to or near their mailboxes for carriers to retrieve on the morning of the drive.