If we could recover just 5 percent of the food wasted each year, we could help feed 14 million people.

With the help of grocery stores and restaurants, we can provide much-needed food to day-care centers, programs for the homeless, women’s shelters and more.

To join in the effort to help end the fight against hunger, contact your nearest Feeding America network member

How to Start

Ask for the food-rescue program transportation manager to arrange a pick-up day(s), or to establish procedures for call-in donations. This person will also be your contact for extra pick-ups and last minute supply needs. Usually the drivers carry supplies with them and are able to replenish your bags and/or pans.

Once it has been determined that food at your facility will be donated to a Feeding America food recovery program, the following steps are taken. (Refer to our food guidelines chart for instructions on packing specific food items).

       * Transfer food to either a bag or pan. The food bank supplies bags and sometimes pans, but if you are able to provide your own disposable packaging for donations, you help the food-rescue program use its resources more effectively. However, we don't want packaging to get in the way of your good intentions.

       * Label food with Product Name, Date & your location's name. (for example Beef Stew - 11/2/05 - Mom's Diner)

       * Keep foods at proper temperatures. Food should then be either refrigerated or frozen depending on the date of your scheduled pick up. Chilled perishable food is to be below  40 degrees Fahrenheit except during necessary times of preparation or while being held for service which may not exceed two hours. It is preferred that foods are frozen to maximize freshness.

       * We do not accept any products that contain alcohol.

When your donation is picked up, you will receive a receipt indicating the type of product and its weight. This information should be passed on to your accountant, as there may be tax deductions/credits available to you based on your company's legal structure and geography.

Food Donation Guidelines

Food Products

Preferred Packaging

Storage Conditions**

Non-Acceptable Conditions***

PREPARED FOODS

Sandwiches

Wrapped in clear plastic wrap or foil

Chilled, 40°F or less

Stale/hard bread Encrusted filling

BAKED GOODS


Fresh or day-old bread and/or bagels

Keep separate from other baked goods

Cool, dry area

Stale/hard

Muffins, Pastries cookies

Pack in own paper boxes avoid crumbling

Cool, dry area

Stale/hard bread

PREPACKAGED FOODS


Perishable

Packaged separately
Securely Closed

Chilled, 40°F or less

Opened, punctured, bulging or damaged packaging

Non-perishable (mislabeled- ok with proper notification)

Packaged separately
Securely Closed

Cool, dry area

Opened, punctured, bulging or damaged packaging

FROZEN


Dairy, Pastries Factory-prepared

Packaged separately
Securely Closed

Frozen, 0°F or less

Defrosted, punctured, opened or damaged packaging Severe freezer burn

Vegetables Meat, Poultry, Fish

Packaged separately
Securely Closed

Frozen, 0°F or less

Defrosted or damaged packaging Severe freezer burn

Dairy

Individually wrapped
Clear plastic wrap

Refrigerated at all times

Damaged packaging

Milk

Securely closed

Refrigerated at all times
40°F or less

Damaged packaging

Meat, Poultry, Fish Fresh

Original Packaging
Clear plastic wrap

Refrigerated at all times
40°F or less

Strong odor Discoloration

Frozen

Original Packaging
Clear plastic wrap

Frozen at all times 40°F or less

Damaged packaging

FRESH PRODUCE

Whole

Bag or carton

Cool, dry area

Significant Decay

Chopped

Bag each vegetable separately

Chilled, 40°F or less

Color change or decay

BEVERAGES


Perishable

Securely closed Bag or carton

Chilled, 40°F or less

Alcohol not accepted

Non-Perishable

Bag or carton

Cool, dry, unopened

Opened, punctured, bulging