Watch: Farmer Gives Thousands of Potatoes to Neighbors in Need During Pandemic

A potato farm in Oakley, Idaho, is helping its neighbors put food on their tables during the Chinese coronavirus pandemic.

While many businesses remain closed due to the health crisis, farmers have been forced to throw away some of their crops, according to KING 5.

However, when thousands of potatoes began piling up at Cranney Farms with no one to buy them, CEO Ryan Cranney decided to do something different with the overabundance of food.

“I didn’t really have a market for those potatoes, it’s something I would have had to dump or go to like cattle feed,” he said.

On Facebook Tuesday, the farm shared a picture of the mountain of potatoes and announced it would give them away to anyone in need.

FREE POTATOES – We started dumping potatoes today as we have no home for them because of this Covid 19 disaster. The…

Posted by Ryan Cranney on Tuesday, April 14, 2020

“I just felt like it could be something to maybe give back to the community. I know people are struggling financially with the shutdown of the economy,” Cranney noted.

Since Tuesday, people from all over the state traveled to the farm to take advantage of the offer.

“Somebody’s coming from Moscow, Idaho, which was quite amusing to me,” Cranney said, adding, “There’s been times where there were 20 or 30 cars there at a time it looks like. I think in the next several hours, most of that will be all gone.”

Normally, the majority of potatoes purchased by the food service industry would be made into French fries.

“All the way from the upscale restaurants to the family sit-downs, diners. Stuff like that,” Cranney explained.

“That’s just taking a total beating. Food service numbers are down, restaurant business down maybe 80 to 85% down in some places,” he continued.

Even though Cranney is concerned about the future, he said it was encouraging to see people helping each other amidst the difficult circumstances.

“A lot of the people there were not necessarily gathering for themselves, but they were gathering for someone else and going and delivering those to friends, neighbors, someone they know is struggling,” he concluded.


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