Food bound for landfill donated to food bank instead - WFXG FOX54 Augusta - Your News One Hour Earlier

Food bound for landfill donated to food bank instead

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AUGUSTA, GA (WFXG) -

Travis McNeal, the Executive Director for the Golden Harvest Food Bank, sorted through piles of chips, drinks and canned foods that were recovered from the Laney Supermarket Wednesday.

"We're looking at probably 4,000 to 5,000 pounds of food," said McNeal.

McNeal says the food will feed over 4,000 people.

But it nearly went to waste when it was loaded into dumpsters Tuesday, after the Laney Supermarket was evicted because the owners couldn't make a profit.

When people in the community heard a pile of goods was sitting outside the store they showed up to take the merchandise home.

Since SunTrust Bank in Atlanta owned the property, Marshals held the crowd back as fresh food was piled into dumpsters and shipped off to a landfill.

But there was a change in course when the company driving the trucks realized they were trashing perfectly fine food.

"We thought it would be a good thing to take the good material that was not going to perish, instead of just take it to the landfill that we would donate that material," said the owner of Thompson Building Wrecking Company, Hiram Thompson.

Even though a lot of food was saved, there could have been much more.

Golden Harvest officials say when the food was trashed, cleaning supplies were put on top and they leaked onto most of the food.

But they salvaged what they could and they're preparing to send it back into the community. 

"Checking dates, contamination, tears and we'll clean it up and check it," McNeal, said.

When the food is shipped off to distribution centers Monday McNeal hopes they will turn what was a waste into help for the hungry.

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