Hundreds in Ala. Gather for Free Sweet Potatoes

TALLADEGA, Ala. (AP) -- Several hundred people in rural Talladega County are going home with literally tons of sweet potatoes that were given away so they don't go to waste.

The Birmingham News reports at least 400 people were waiting Saturday as a tractor trailer arrived at the Bethel United Methodist Church carrying 42,000 pounds of sweet potatoes.

Area ministries used shovels to load pickup trucks with the sweet spuds to deliver to the sick and elderly. Residents got their share too, filling paper bags, plastic tubs and old paint buckets.

The sweet potatoes were given away by the Society of St. Andrew, a national nonprofit ministry that each year rescues up to 30 million pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables that would otherwise get wasted.

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