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“This is a game changer for us”: 2022 PBJ PLZ! brings in nearly 5 tons of peanut butter and jelly

WCTV’s 2022 PBJ PLZ! drive brings in more than 9,000 pounds of peanut butter and jelly, donations top $37,000
WCTV’s 2022 PBJ PLZ! drive brings in more than 9,000 pounds of peanut butter and jelly, donations top $37,000.
Published: May. 12, 2022 at 8:44 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - WCTV’s PBJ PLZ! drive wrapped up Thursday with a final weigh-in at the Second Harvest warehouse.

The annual drive - now in its 6th year - brought in more than 9,000 pounds of peanut butter and jelly and thanks to checks arriving in the mail Thursday, monetary donations now top $37,000.

All the bins are now in. The warehouse floor at Second Harvest is full of peanut butter and jelly donated by children in Leon County Schools.

“Thank you, Tallahassee. Thank you, Leon County. Most importantly, thank you kids. Thank you, students, for helping your classmates,” Superintendent Rocky Hanna said. “It means a lot and I’m very proud of you.”

PBJ PLZ! is a collaboration among WCTV, Leon County Schools and Second Harvest. This year, it brought in nearly five tons of peanut butter and jelly and more than $37,000.

“Oh my gosh. That’s absolutely incredible,” Second Harvest CEO Monique Van Pelt said when she saw the final numbers. “That blew my expectations out of the water. Wow. Thank you so much.”

This final weigh-in is a welcome sight after a two-year pandemic hiatus. This year students were invited once again to bring jars of peanut butter and jelly to school and the community was also able to donate online.

The biggest influx of donations came during “Crunch Time” when WCTV viewers donated more than $10,000 in just 90 minutes. During that same live broadcast, Julie Montanaro and Ben Kaplan made more than 50 PB&J sandwiches with just one 40-ounce jar of peanut butter. A reminder of what just one jar or one donation can do.

All of the peanut butter and jelly collected during the PBJ PLZ! drive will help to stock the shelves at Second Harvest just in time for summer when children can’t count on free meals at school.

The jars are now bound for summer feeding programs, pantries, giveaways, and Food on the Move buses - which bring free food to children in hungry neighborhoods all summer long.

“This is one of our top requested items,” Second Harvest CEO Monique Van Pelt said. “So this really ... puts a whole lot more poundage out there available to families. This is a game changer for us.”

2022 totals: The peanut butter and jelly weighed in at more than 9,000 pounds which is enough to make more than 194,000 sandwiches. Monetary donations jumped nearly $2,000 Thursday as several checks arrived in the mail. By the end of the day, donations totaled $37,579.

More than 9k pounds of peanut butter and jelly collected!
More than 9k pounds of peanut butter and jelly collected!(WCTV)

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