Three pallets of Project LeanNation meals sit in Foodlink’s 5,000-square-foot freezer.
It’s always nice to hear about local start-ups that not only find business success, but also give back to the communities that have supported them along the way.
This week, 4,440 healthy, frozen meals were delivered to Foodlink as a donation from Lean Life Manufacturing. Based out of Henrietta, the startup company is less than 11 months old, but has already donated more than 5,000 frozen meals to Foodlink.
“We look forward to growing and working with partners that help us give back to the Rochester area,” the company said.
Thank you for your support of Foodlink and the people we serve!
Various photos showing TEFAP foods in the Foodlink warehouse.
This past week, Foodlink has contacted the six representatives (2 Senators and 4 House Members) in its 10-county service area to convey our concern that food purchases made through The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) are currently below adequate levels.
TEFAP foods provided by the USDA are an important part of the food our network relies on to help feed hungry Americans. Foodlink sent letters and made calls to the offices of Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, Sen. Charles Schumer, Rep. Louise Slaughter, Rep. John Katko, Rep. Chris Collins and Rep. Tom Reed to urge them to make sure the USDA make additional purchases before the Sept. 30 deadline. Without additional purchases, there will be a 43% drop in purchases for FY 2017, which would greatly impact the Feeding America network of 200 food banks.
We hope they get our message! We must raise our voices in support of TEFAP. About 20% of the food we distribute to hundreds of emergency food providers comes from this important program.
A screenshot of the NPR story published Aug. 1 that features Foodlink.
Many kind words flooded social media Wednesday and Thursday after the publication of an NPR story that detailed the work we’re doing at Foodlink.
The crux of the article, titled, “Beyond Pantries: This Food Bank Invests in theLocal Community,” touched on the evolving landscape of food banking, and how Foodlink is leading the charge through several innovative programs. We still collect and distribute food, but the development of food access and nutrition education programs, our brand new commercial kitchen, food processing and workforce development initatives is where the future lies.
After explaining Foodlink’s Value-Added Processing goals, the article says:
“It’s outside the realm of what most people think of when they think of a food bank,” says Julia Tedesco, the executive director of Foodlink. But this aligns with the organization’s mission, she adds. By investing in the local economy, the organization has been able to tackle the root cause of hunger – poverty.
Foodlink has nearly doubled its staff since it started investing in local produce, therefore creating new jobs for the community. At the same time school children are eating more nutritious scratch-cooked foods. It’s a way for Foodlink to “nourish this community by nourishing the economy and the individuals in it,” says Tedesco.
Aside from Tedesco, others quoted in the story include Janet Poppendieck, a senior fellow at the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute; and Andy Fisher, cofounder of the non-profit Community Food Security Coalition and author of Big Hunger: the Unholy Alliance Between Corporate America and Anti-Hunger Groups.
Thanks to all who have reached out to us on social media to offer their congrats!