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March is Nutrition Month – CAN you believe it?

Mar 15, 2023

We are constantly working tirelessly to turn the tide on most people’s understanding of what goes into an Emergency Food Hamper; we still hear a lot of people understanding/believing that it’s mostly a bunch of canned goods. While this is partially true, many core items in our hampers are canned, such as vegetables and meat like tuna. Still, plenty of other items in our hampers don’t fit into the “canned” category.

what's in a hamper

On average, our emergency food hampers contain 16% whole grains, 26% protein, 28% fruits and vegetables, and 30% is categorized as ‘other,’ which includes items like baking supplies, white bread, pasta, or snack foods.

Every day we prepare and distribute hundreds of nutritious food hampers packed with various foods that last for 7-10 days. Working with a dietician, we strive to meet Canada’s Food Guide as we must meet multiple dietary needs. Just like canned goods in our pantry, there is a place for cans in our hampers. We know that canned fruits and vegetables are picked at their peak, their height of freshness, and so the vitamins and minerals that are good for us are trapped until we open them and enjoy them. These foods packed in water with no salt or sugar added are the best. Beans, legumes, and pulses should be rinsed well to remove sodium. Still, many contain protein and fibre, making them the best choice for a healthy diet.    

What better month to host the world-renowned CANstruction ® event than Nutrition Month! CANstruction is an international hunger relief charity that raises millions of pounds of food each year for local food banks. This year CANstruction® Calgary will bring together 9 teams of engineers, designers, architects, and builders to create extraordinary structures using over 37 thousand cans of food…core items that will be donated and will fill our emergency food hampers.    

This year’s Theme is Alice in WonderCAN, and most of the builds will be at Southcentre Mall’s Centre Court. This year’s builders are Fluor, Maple Reinders, Suncor Energy, St. Michael School, St. Ambrose School, The City of Calgary, Associated Engineering, Bantrel, and Spartan Controls. The teams are judged on structural ingenuity, best use of labels, best original design, people’s choice, most cans, and best meal.   

 These marvelous creations can be viewed from March 16 (build day) through March 30. When you come to check them out, please bring non-perishable food items to donate. 

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In the spirit of reconciliation, the Calgary Food Bank acknowledges that we live, work and play on the traditional territories of the Blackfoot Confederacy (Siksika, Kainai, Piikani), the Tsuut’ina, the Îyâxe Nakoda Nations, the Métis Nation (Region 3), and all people who make their homes in the Treaty 7 region of Southern Alberta.

Calgary Food Bank

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Calgary, AB T2H 2Y5


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