MOBILE, Ala (WALA) -- A local food bank getting a big donation on Wednesday from a giant grocery store chain.

The $150,000 donation from Publix is going to be used right here along the Gulf Coast.

Feeding the Gulf Coast Donation

Feeding the Gulf Coast Donation

“This donation helps us do what all the donations from the community, from individuals, give us the chance to do,” said Dave Reaney, Interim President and CEO of Feeding the Gulf Coast.

The food banks said the money will be used to replace an aging truck to better serve the community.

“The truck will pick up from grocery stores and will deliver to rural and local food pantries and churches, more than a million pounds a year,” Reaney said. “One truck.”

Before the check presentation Publix employees spent about an hour sorting and packing food bags.

Wednesday’s event part of a nationwide day of giving.

Publix handing out about $5 million in grants to hunger relief organizations in the Southeast, $450,000 of it in Alabama.

“With these grants we know they're vital to these organizations, great organizations, like feeding the gulf coast that understands this community,” said Dwaine Stevens with Publix.

The money is vitally important this time of year as donations are down during the summer.

The Gulf Coast also deals with hurricanes that can put a stress on the system.

“For Hurricane Michael last year our staff went down to Panama City and literally stayed down there in tents to help get the job done,” Reaney said.

This is Publix’s 5th year of donating to Feeding the Gulf Coast.

Last year alone the food bank gave out over 22 million meals.

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