Farmers are responsible for growing and raising all of the food that we eat.

So it seemed fitting for a charity effort such as the Good Cheer Fund food delivery, that local producers would want to help drop off baskets to needy families.

Johnson County Farm Bureau has been volunteering with the delivery for years, said David Harrell, Young Farmer chairman and organizer of the Good Cheer activities.

“Being farmers, providing food is a big concern to all of us,” he said. “Any time we can do that in our own community, especially for a cause we’re so passionate about, it’s a great opportunity.”

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The organization tries to help in two ways.

County bureau leaders asked if they could provide one food item to place in every basket passed out. Popcorn is the bureau’s signature item when it does promotions, so every basket will contain one package of microwave popcorn for the families, Harrell said.

That effort has expanded to include a package of cornbread muffins for all 800 baskets given out.

“We’re always looking to promote what we do at Farm Bureau. It’s local farmers, it’s local dollars, and it was something we could do to free up more dollars so they could fill more baskets,” Harrell said.

Second, the bureau’s Johnson County Young Farmer program — which helps young people get involved in agriculture — gathers on Christmas Eve morning to help deliver baskets.

Harrell goes early to pick up the baskets, then the group meets for breakfast in Franklin before delivering the food. Most of the time, their deliveries are in the Franklin area, but they’ve been asked to deliver all over the county, Harrell said.

“Our group is centered around community service and doing things in our hometown. It’s a good thing when you drop off that food and see how it’s helping people,” he said.

— Ryan Trares, Daily Journal staff writer

Ryan Trares is a reporter for the Daily Journal. He can be reached at or 317-736-2727.