$145,000 Kroger grant to Forgotten Harvest provides more than a half million meals for hungry in Southeast Michigan

$145,000 Kroger grant to Forgotten Harvest provides more than a half million meals for hungry in Southeast Michigan
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A $145,000 grant from the Kroger Foundation to Forgotten Harvest will provide more than a half million meals for hungry folks in Southeast Michigan.

Here’s how it works. Every dollar donated equals four meals and prevents food waste.

“The Kroger Co. of Michigan is pleased to endorse this generous grant to help end hunger and food waste in southeast Michigan,” says Rachel Hurst, corporate affairs manager for Michigan Kroger. “Everyone benefits from our ongoing ability to boost the nutrition level for hungry neighbors while diverting food from area landfills.”

The donated food, which would otherwise go to waste, is delivered free-of-charge to more than 250 emergency food providers in the metro Detroit area.

The donation completes a previous multi-year commitment and investment in the food rescue organization’s operational capacity building to strengthen its surplus food recovery and distribution logistics model.

Michigan Kroger has partnered with Forgotten Harvest since 2004.

Money is not the only way that Kroger has helped Forgotten Harvest wage its war on hunger. In 2017 alone, 93 Kroger stores in Southeast Michigan donated 4.15 million pounds of food, which, according to USDA calculations, will help provide enough food for 3.4 million meals to help those in need.

That need is great in our region.

In metro Detroit, one in six people and one in four children face hunger and food insecurity. Those sobering statistics come from current U.S. Census data.

“Forgotten Harvest stands proudly with corporate partners like The Kroger Co. of Michigan and its visionary Zero Hunger | Zero Waste initiative to end hunger and food insecurity while delivering healthy, nutritious food,” says Kirk Mayes, CEO of Forgotten Harvest. “Forgotten Harvest would not be able to help so many in need within our community without Kroger’s partnership and support.”

According to Kroger’s Zero Hunger | Zero Waste initiative more than 40 percent of the food produced in the U.S. is uneaten, yet 1 in 8 Americans struggle with hunger.

“Food waste undermines food security,” the initiative says.

Kroger created the program to help end hunger and food waste by 2025.

Since 2010, Forgotten Harvest’s capacity has grown from rescuing 19.3 million pounds of food each year to 45.8 million pounds in 2017, a 135 percent increase. It collects surplus prepared and perishable food from more than 800 locations, including grocery stores, fruit and vegetable markets, restaurants, caterers, dairies, farmers, wholesale food distributors and other Health Department-approved sources. The donated food, which would otherwise go to waste, is delivered free-of-charge to more than 250 emergency food providers in the metro Detroit area.

Hunger and food insecurity are huge issues, but partnerships like this aim to shrink the numbers of those who stare them in the face.

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