RALEIGH -- The N.C. State Fair has been in full swing for a week now and if you haven't checked it out yet, Thursday might be the perfect day to go. It's the Food Lion Hunger Relief Day where four cans of food gets you into the fair for free.
"It's amazing as big an agriculture state as North Carolina is, we still have hungry people," said Steve Troxler, the N.C. agriculture commissioner.
Officials say more than 170,000 people in North Carolina receive emergency food assistance each week.
"Seventeen percent of North Carolinians are what we call food insecure, where they don't necessarily know where their meals are going to come from day to day," said Mary Hinds from the Church World Service.
This week, Food Lion donated nearly 7,000 pounds of non-perishables to the cause. But, many say it'll take a lot more to put a dent in the hunger need going into the holiday season.
"So it's a great opportunity for the community to be a part of it," said Earline Middleton from the Food Bank of Central and Eastern N.C. "It's a fun activity, they get to come to the fair, they get to bring food and in turn help to support this food drive."
It's an easy way to give back knowing your generous donation will help meet the demands of a pressing issue across our state.
The food collected will go to the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina. The fair donation record sits at 247,000 pounds of food. If that record is broken, the state fair will donate $1,000 to the cause.