Seattle, 2016-Aug-27 — /EPR Retail News/ — Starbucks is rolling out Starbucks® FoodShare, a program to donate ready-to-eat meals to food banks from its U.S. company-operated stores, two years ahead of schedule.
When announcing the program in March, the company planned to complete the rollout of the program across its 7,600 company-operated stores by 2021. Now the company is accelerating the program to reach all participating U.S stores in three years instead of five.
“The response to Starbucks FoodShare has been so positive that we have determined we need to move even faster to serve more communities in need. Our store partners are telling us the need is urgent and we can do more,” said John Kelly, senior vice president, Starbucks Global Responsibility, Community and Public Policy. “With Feeding America’s strategic partnership, we’re excited to announce that we are going to now try to achieve a national rollout two years faster than originally planned.”
In just its first few months, Starbucks FoodShare has already contributed more than 300,000 nourishing meals to people in need. In the Midwest, Southern California and Arizona, refrigerated food has been added to an existing pickup from the Food Donation Connection several times a week. In San Diego, Starbucks and Feeding America launched a pilot project to route a designated refrigerated truck to Starbucks stores daily to pick up any unsold food to deliver to agencies a few hours later. More than 2,400 U.S. Starbucks partners (employees) have helped by donating food every night as part of their store closing routine.
“Partners take great pride in being the catalyst for this program, they knew food that couldn’t be sold in our stores the next day, yet was still safe to consume, could serve a higher purpose. They are reminded of their impact every time they work a closing shift and put salads and sandwiches in the refrigerator instead of the trash for people who are hungry,” said Alyssa Edelen, Starbucks district manager in San Diego.
In partnership with Feeding America and Food Donation Connection, Starbucks intends to scale this program over the next three years and rescue 100 percent of its food available for donation from participating company-operated U.S. stores. In the first year alone, Starbucks FoodShare will be able to provide nearly 5 million meals to individuals and families in need of nourishing food. In partnership with Feeding America, Starbucks is set to on board more than 1,800 Starbucks stores sending meals to nine food banks over the next 12 months.
Hunger exists in every county in the U.S., affecting 48 million Americans including 15 million children according to Feeding America.
On September 8, Hunger Action Day, Starbucks will host members of congress in the Capitol Hill Starbucks location who will participate in the FoodShare process and learn more about the program’s origin with Starbucks baristas. A panel discussion with Feeding America, Capital Area Food Bank and Starbucks leaders will follow, to discuss the critical role that food rescue plays in hunger relief.
Just days before Hunger Action Month launches, Starbucks partners in San Diego are gearing up to celebrate the successful rollout of the San Diego market FoodShare program with a fitting team activity – they are gathering to volunteer at a local Feeding America Food Bank.
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