Foodbank Rus Distributed 5.8 mln kg of Donated Food to Those in Need All Over Russia
In 2018, under the food and non-food assistance program, socially unprotected segments of the population received in the “food bank” more than 5.8 mln kg of food and essential goods from manufacturers, retailers, food chains and concerned people in the country. Foodbank Rus, the first “food bank” in Russia with the support of churches, regional non-profit organizations and state social services, collected, delivered to the regions and distributed food.
The main volume was made up of products that manufacturers had no time to send for sale and they were in danger of being utilized. Due to the fact that the Foodbank Rus cut a deal with the manufacturers and took these products before the expiration date, the needy received free high-quality food. At the same time, this allowed to save resources spent on the production of products, and to reduce the harm to the environment, preventing utilization.
More than 20 million Russians live below the poverty line and need food aid. The situations are completely different, someone has lost his job, there are families who have lost their breadwinner, faced with the illness of a family member, single pensioners. In this situation, all the money goes to pay for utilities, treatment, and purchase of vital food and personal care products. What we are trying to do here is to help these people.
Head of the Foundation Foodbank Rus
Dairy products, cereals, sunflower oil, canned food, frozen fish, juices, water, confectionery, as well as personal hygiene products, diapers and household chemicals. This is far not full list of what the “Food Fund Russia” donated to the needy in 2018.
Banks of food are arranged according to the same principle as cans of grain or blood banks. Food Banks collect products from various sources and redistribute them to those who need them most.
The donors, food producers, manufacturers and retailers, supply Foodbank with excess or surplus food that would have been otherwise disposed off into landfill. The food is then dispatched from Foodbank distribution centres to welfare agencies to ultimately reach people in need.
The donors, food producers, manufacturers and retailers, supply Foodbank with excess or surplus food that would have been otherwise disposed off into landfill. Producers can give to the Fund goods with expiring (up to 5 days!) shelf life, as well as batches of products with an error in the label and other shortcomings, the manufacturer most likely will not sell such goods, and it is impractical and pitiful to destroy a good product. Part of the food is collected in the framework of food marathons. This program involves holding promotions in stores, where anyone can donate food to volunteers of the foundation or put them in special boxes so that volunteers can give them to low-income citizens.
In 2019, the Foodbank Rus is going to expand the geography of food aid programs. So far, the coverage of the “food bank” comprised 53 regions of Russia. Every year, the fund seeks to increase the volume of food that goes to the needy, many areas are still not covered, for example, there is still no solution found for collecting ready meals from cafes and restaurants, as well as collecting food residues from stores. One of the solutions for increasing the volume of salvaged food is to consider a legislative initiative in the field of taxing commodity donations, which will make it more profitable for manufacturers and retail chains to donate goods (companies donate goods to the food bank from net profits after paying all taxes, while recycle products are much cheaper). It is planned to initiate a broad discussion of a possible solution to this problem with the involvement of industry experts.