(AREA) -- The 22nd annual Michigan Harvest Gathering campaign is underway. Secretary of State Ruth Johnson encourages residents to donate nonperishable food items at their local Secretary of State branch offices, continuing a long-standing tradition of giving to families in need. Examples of food items include canned meats, dry beans, soups, beef stew, pasta products, peanut butter and tuna. Baby food or formula, diapers, soap, toothpaste and toothbrushes, and monetary donations will also gratefully accepted.
Since 1990, when the Michigan Harvest Gathering campaign started, more than 19 million meals have been provided to Michigan residents. The 2012 goal is 300,000 pounds of food and $1 million. In 2011, Michigan Harvest Gathering collected more than 140,000 pounds of food and $531,000. The campaign runs through October 15. However, donated items can be dropped off at any Secretary of State branch office through November 30. The campaign is coordinated by the Food Bank Council of Michigan, which supplies the state's regional food banks through donations of food and money.