Last year, we donated over a half-million meals to Oregon food pantries through donations of high-quality, unsold food. In every community we serve, we’ve partnered with a local food bank to make significant contributions to reduce hunger.
Multiple times each week, food bank staff members collect produce, bakery items, dairy products, fresh meats and deli meats, prepared foods, such as salads, sandwiches and burritos, and pantry staples, like canned foods, boxed foods, cereals, grains and pasta.
Our contribution model began in Eugene over 15 years ago, and Market of Choice was one of the first retail stores to begin donating products to FOOD for Lane County. “Every business should find ways to give back and contribute to the community. We recognized the need and decided to help,” says Rick Wright, owner and CEO of Market of Choice.
With each new store opening, we develop relationships with the local food bank. In many of the communities we serve as a family-owned grocer, we are often the food bank’s top donor. Fresh items are difficult for food banks to source, so much of the food we donate helps diversify what food banks are able to distribute.
We take great care to ensure that the products we provide are fresh and of the highest quality. FOOD for Lane County Logistics and Food Resourcing Manager Brad Bassi says, “MOC staff treat the food they give to us as carefully as an incoming product, and that really helps us know we are getting a high-quality product.”
Clare Stager, program director at Urban Gleaners in Portland, appreciates that our teammates make it easy for her team to collect and organize the food so that it can be distributed quickly. After leaving our stores, food is sorted at each food bank and is distributed by community partners.
“We love partnering with Market of Choice stores,” says Stager. “They always provide us with healthy, high-quality items for our families to enjoy. We’re so grateful for the hardworking team in receiving at Market of Choice, who make it incredibly easy on our team.”
Feeding hungry neighbors and keeping food out of the waste stream is deeply satisfying for us. We value the relationships we have with each local organization and the opportunity to be a vital partner in creating strong, local communities.