A local food pantry announced a fund-raiser, or generates publicity because in hard times, they are running out of food. So with your helping heart, you head for the supermarket, purchase a tray of canned string beans, and haul them to the pantry.
You could have just given them the money you spent.
Leader of Feeding America, formerly America's Second Harvest, explains that regional food operations that support local pantries can transform a $1 gift into $15 worth of food. This is accomplished by obtaining surplus food from the government, or from brand-name companies. If Kellogg's produces more boxes of corn flakes than Kellogg's can sell, for example, the surplus is obtained by the Feeding America operation.
Food pantries always welcome donations of canned goods and other perishable items. Your thoughts are what count. Just don't get any false impressions that you are selling them short by giving cash. Actually, you are selling them long.