June 19, 2017 7:39 am

Just over 47,000 pounds of food collected for 2017 London Cares Curb Hunger Food Drive

Twitter/City of London

After getting off to a slow start, organizers with the 21st Annual London Cares Curb Hunger Food Drive say a last-minute push from the public made all the difference.

On Sunday, organizers announced 47,025 pounds of food had been collected through the drive, about eight per cent more than last year’s 43,430 pound total.

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The food drive officially wrapped up on Friday. Just two days earlier, the drive had only collected around 10,000 pounds of food, organizers said.

READ MORE: London Food Bank announces ‘grow a row’ program at curbside food drive launch

This year’s edition of the campaign also saw the start of the “Plant a Row, Grow a Row” initiative, that sees families sign up to grow a row of produce and donate the harvest to the Food Bank.

By Sunday, 60 families had signed up to grow and donate, organizers said, about 10 more than the initial target. Sign-up for the initiative will continue through the summer.

On average, some 3,500 families were using the Food Bank on a monthly basis during the first half of the year, said Jane Roy, the food bank’s co-executive director, in a statement.

More than 1.3 million pounds of food has been collected for the food bank over the drive’s 21-year run.

— With files from Natalie Lovie

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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