As we head into the much anticipated 2020 holiday season during the COVID-19 pandemic, the hunger gap in the U.S. is growing steadily. From job losses due to lockdowns and company layoffs amid pandemic-induced downsizing, the number of Americans in need is rising.
For The Kroger Co., both giving back to the communities it serves and the environment it must preserve is of utmost importance. Keith Dailey, group vice president of corporate affairs at Kroger, fills us in on what the company is doing to address these issues and the initiative it put into place to promote a better future for customers, associates and the world at large.
In the U.S. alone, 40 percent of produced food is never consumed and instead discarded, yet 1 in 9 Americans go hungry every day. To address the paradox, Kroger established Zero Hunger | Zero Waste in 2017. As consumers are becoming more and more consciously aware of which brands do good for the community and the planet, Kroger stands out with its Zero Hunger | Zero Waste initiative. In 2019, Kroger surpassed its three-year goal to donate one billion meals by 2020, putting the grocery retailer on track to achieve its goal of donating three billion meals by 2025.
Check out other ways Kroger is making a difference to reduce waste in the shopping experience here.
As part of Kroger’s Zero Hunger | Zero Waste initiative, the grocery retailer expanded its longstanding food rescue program. It all begins with Kroger’s in-store associates, who gather healthy, edible items that are nearing expiration; even select non-perishable items are re-distributed where needed. Teaming up with Feeding America® food banks and other partners, these products are able to be dispersed into the hands of those in need. Last year, Kroger rescued and donated 101 million pounds of safe, surplus food from its retail stores, distribution centers and manufacturing plants.
Listen to the full podcast to learn more about Kroger's initiative and how you may be able to help in your community this holiday season and beyond.