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FSU food pantry begins annual competition with University of Florida pantry

Beat UF Beat Hunger is a friendly battle between the school's pantries
Florida State food pantry begins annual competition with University of Florida pantry
Posted at 5:56 PM, Nov 01, 2023
  • FSU Food For Thought pantry begins an annual competiton with UF Field and Fork pantry to fight food insecurity.
  • Click or tap here to find a list of drop-off locations and how to contribute in other ways.
  • Watch now to hear from a student who utilizes the pantry and how important the resource is to him.

November means Florida State's annual football battle against University of Florida, but this one also battles food insecurity. It's something that 1 in 5 FSU students experiences.

I'm Alberto Camargo your Collegetown neighborhood reporter.

I'm here at one of six drop-off points for the Beat UF Beat Hunger food drive by FSU's Food for Thought Pantry. I stopped by on the first day of the competition to find out why its so important and how we can help.

Food For Thought says it has served about 1,100 students in about 3,400 visits this semester. I spoke to FSU senior, Francisco Gomez, who described to me how much Food for Thought means to him.

He says the pantry is crucial, because it helps him survive until he can save enough for a grocery run.

Francisco visits Food For Thought as often as three times a week.

He says without the pantry, he honestly doesn't know what he would do.

Francisco was one of many students who came alone, but Food For Thought manager Haley Gentile says come in groups if that's easier.

"You don't have to do that by yourself. There are many other students who have that shared experience."

The competition runs through Nov. 25. Food donations of all kinds are accepted. Take a look here at the points system.

Some things like canned veggies are worth one point. But food items needed more often are worth more points, like canned meat, which is worth five.

"But really any non-perishable, not expired and unopened food item, we're happy to receive."

Volunteer Nora Romano says helping to fight food insecurity is all the motivation she needs.

"Last year we did really good work with Beat UF for Hunger, so we're hoping to accomplish the same goal this year."

She also is, "hoping to beat the Gators."