A Second Chance for Food Waste

“When Whole Foods Market stores have food to be donated, our team members take great care to maintain quality and assure the food is safe to consume. After the team member has recorded the item, they properly package it and place it in a storage bin for collection,” says Susan Livingston, Whole Foods’ global marketing director and community engagement lead.

McDonald's donated millions of pounds of food that otherwise might have gone to waste.

In the United States, along with support from Food Donation Connection, McDonald’s has donated over nine million pounds of food - estimated at over $12 million- to communities and food banks throughout the country since March of this year in response to the COVID pandemic.

KFC Harvest Program Doubles Down On Hunger Relief, Provides 1.2 Million Pounds Of Food To U.S. Food Banks In 2020

Kentucky Fried Chicken® announced it will donate 621,000 pounds of food to food banks across the country, enough food to provide more than 600,000 meals for people in need. KFC has been donating surplus food from its U.S. restaurants in partnership with Food Donation Connection for more than 20 years through the Harvest Program, KFC's prepared food donation program. Through Harvest, participating KFC restaurants donate wholesome, unsold food to hunger relief agencies in communities across the U.S.

Happy Earth Day!

Since 1992, Food Donation Connection has coordinated the Harvest Program for Yum Brands -- they have donated more than 190 million pounds of food to local charities.

McDonald’s Donates $3.1 Million in Food to U.S. Communities during COVID-19 Outbreak

(CHICAGO, IL) – McDonald’s today announced it has donated $3.1 million dollars in food to support local communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. To date, the donations equate to nearly 3 million total pounds of food, including dairy, beef, produce, fruit and bakery items. In the last few weeks, McDonald’s donated over 1.2 million pounds of 100% USDA-inspected beef, specifically.

“Food Donation Connection continues to be impressed with how involved McDonald’s Owner/Operators are in supporting their communities. We appreciate how food donations from McDonald’s restaurants, suppliers and distribution centers make a significant impact on the ability of local non-profits to help people in need,” said Jim Larson, Vice President of Development, Food Donation Connection.

Newsweek has compiled a list of ways people can support, donate, or volunteer during the COVID-19 outbreak.

The coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak has brought out the caring side of people across the world with Google searches on how to donate or help different groups of people affected at an all-time high.


If you run a business and have any leftover food that might perish during the outbreak, you can get in touch with Food Donation Connection.

Shared Table: Chick-fil-A’s food donation program

Chick-fil-A started Shared Table in 2012 in an effort to make use of surplus food in restaurants, while also meeting a need in the community. Today, more than 1,000 Chick-fil-A restaurants take part in the program, which continues to grow each year. With the help of Food Donation Connection.

Accelerator Expert Network Knowledge Series: Bill Reighard, Food Donation Connection

The Accelerator Expert Network Knowledge Series highlights interviews with members of the ReFED Nonprofit Food Recovery Accelerator's Expert Network, representing a diverse group of food businesses, capital providers, government agencies, technology companies and food systems subject matter experts. Given the Accelerator's aim to catalyze ideas and inspire actions that will lead to a doubling of healthy food available to the 40 million Americans facing food insecurity, a new interview from an Expert Network member will be released each week throughout the course of the 3-month program, running from September - December, 2019. Each interview can be downloaded here.

In this week's interview, we hear from Bill Reighard, President and Founder of Food Donation Connection (FDC), who spent a long career with PepsiCo, overseeing Asia operations for retailers like Pizza Hut and Taco Bell. When the executive team at Pizza Hut told him about an idea for donating leftover prepared food to food recovery agencies, he was immediately intrigued. Bill tested this model with Pizza Hut and now, over 25 years later, FDC has coordinated the donation of more than 550 million pounds of quality prepared food in 24 countries. Built on a business model that maximizes tax donation incentives and pays critical attention to food safety, FDC is planning to continue pursing business opportunities with new partners interested in establishing or improving upon their existing current food donation program

Leading Food Rescue Organizations Join Forces

Food Rescue Hero and Food Donation Connection – boasting, respectively, the largest network of food recovery drivers and the largest global network of donor restaurants – will collaborate to keep good food out of landfills.

El Pollo Loco Leads Company-Wide Effort to Donate Surplus Food

El Pollo Loco, the nation's leading fire-grilled chicken chain, today announced its commitment to the communities it serves through a new company-wide food donation program, Pollo with Purpose. In partnership with Food Donation Connection, El Pollo Loco plans to donate 500,000 pounds of surplus food to more than 200 local charities annually.

Tennessee based Food Donation Connection has been linking restaurants and other food industry donors with charities to help feed the hungry for over 27 years

FDC, with its headquarters in The Renaissance | Farragut, serves as a middleman between food donors and charities locally, as well as across the nation and in about 26 other countries.

Everyone at the the Cheesecake Factory strives to achieve excellence in everything they do

The Harvest Program, a national program through which our restaurants donated more than 445,000 pounds of surplus food to local and regional feeding agencies for distribution to soup kitchens and homeless shelters in 2018. Since inception of the program in 2008, our restaurants have donated more than 4.7 million pounds of food, the equivalent of 4.7 million meals.

Hyatt Corporate Responsibility Highlights 2018/2019

At Hyatt, our purpose is to care for people so they can be their best. This purpose is at the heart of how we care for our guests and colleagues, and is the reason why addressing today’s environmental and social issues is important to us. A healthy planet and thriving communities are paramount for the wellbeing of all people.


We focus our efforts in areas that impact our business and that we can most effectively influence, including providing an inclusive workplace that allows our colleagues to grow and be themselves, giving back to the communities we call home, advocating for human rights, and mitigating negative environmental impacts.

Longhorn Steakhouse: Passion for Food and our Community

In partnership with Food Donation Connection, every LongHorn Steakhouse focuses on giving back by participating in its Harvest program by contributing high-quality food items, such as steak, seafood and vegetables on a weekly basis to community food banks and other non-profit organizations to help feed the hungry.

Cheddar's Scratch Kitchen is working hard to Scratch out hunger!

Because there's nothing better than a home-cooked meal, but not everyone has access to homemade meals. Hunger affects 1 in 8 people in America. Here at Cheddar's, we're helping to SCRATCH OUT hunger. Every week, Cheddar's donates unused food to more than 150 local food banks. Together we donate 32,000 pounds of unused food every month. That's 26,000 scratch-made meals each month. Scratching out hunger!

San Angleo, TX Olive Garden Harvest Program in the news

Olive Garden in San Angelo, TX describing their Harvest Program on KLST-TV|KSAN-TV news.

Galesburg KFCs fight hunger with donations

Central Iowa KFC Inc. announced its Galesburg restaurants donated 7,209 pounds of food (32,623 pounds company-wide) to two charities in Galesburg during 2018 through the Harvest Food Donation program. The Salvation Army and Galesburg Rescue Mission repurposed the donated food to create protein- and nutrient-rich meals for people in need across the city of Galesburg.

KFC Romania donates food surplus from restaurants to disadvantaged people

KFC Romania also carries out the Harvest Social Responsibility programthis year , aimed at reducing food waste and helping people from disadvantaged environments.

Nando's: No chuckin'; our chicken!

We refuse to waste food when people are going hungry. As a restaurant business, we’ve learned that some food waste is unavoidable, but we try to reduce it as much as possible by cooking chicken only when it’s needed.


Since 2013 at the end of every night, any cooked chicken that hasn’t been sold is temperature checked, frozen and given to one of the restaurant’s charity partners.


We have over 530 charity partners across the UK and Ireland, supporting all kinds of causes, including youth, homelessness, refugees, and women and family shelters.


If there’s any food waste we can’t donate, we send it to Anaerobic Digestion where it is turned into renewable energy and agricultural fertilizer.


Find out more here:

KFC donating in Heerlen, Netherlands

KFC rolling out new food donation program in Heerlen, Netherlands.

Whole Foods case study

Food donation is a critical part of reducing waste. Businesses across many sectors donate surplus food to reduce waste, feed hungry people, and increase the bottom line. This case study provides an overview of food donation programs at The Westin Boston Waterfront Hotel and Whole Foods Market in Medford, outlining the steps each business took to build a program that successfully diverts nutritious and delicious food from disposal and provides it to people in need.

Pilot Flying J Teams Up with Food Donation Connection to Donate Surplus Food to Local Food Banks

Partnership with FDC Harvest Program to reduce food waste, provide more than 200,000 pounds of food to those in need... 

"Food Donation Connection is proud to partner with Pilot Flying J to strengthen their commitment to helping their local communities," said Keith Crowe, project manager at Food Donation Connection. "All qualifying unserved food can now be donated to charities, local to Pilot Flying J travel centers throughout the U.S. This program will help feed those in need and will divert wholesome food from the waste stream – creating a win-win for all involved."

Congress Passes PATH Act -Enhanced Food Donation Tax Deduction Available to All Companies

On December 18, 2015, President Obama signed HR 2029 -The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2016. Contained in this bill was a provision that made the enhanced deduction for food donations permanently available to non C-corporations – retroactive for contributions made after December 31, 2014. Previously, only C-corporations could realize the enhanced tax benefit from donating their surplus food. In addition, the bill:

Increased the charitable contributions cap from 10% to 15% of net income for Non-C corporations or taxable income for C-corporations -applicable to taxable years beginning after December 31, 2015.

Allowed non C-corporations a tax deduction carry forward of 5 years, mirroring the treatment of C corporations -applicable to taxable years beginning after December 31, 2015.

Defined the Fair Market Value of Donated Food by taking into account the price for which the item is sold at the time of the contribution without regard to lack of market, internal standards -applicable to taxable years beginning after December 31, 2015.

Provided basis for food donations from businesses using the cash method of accounting (typically identified as “farmers and ranchers”) as 25% of the fair market value -applicable to taxable years beginning after December 31, 2015.

Twitter Chat: Yum! Brands Discusses Global Hunger Relief Efforts

TriplePundit - Join TriplePundit, Yum! Brands,World Food Programme, and Food Donation Connection on Thursday, October 15th at9am PST / Noon EST at #3pYumChat for a special Twitter Chat about global hunger relief efforts and World Food Day.

U.S. restaurants are terrible at getting wasted food to the hungry. Can we change that?

Grist - There are managed programs for restaurants to donate their surplus food.

Surplus Food Donations Overview

USDA – Presentation on Surplus Food Donations by Jim Larson.  Jim directs program development for Food Donation Connection (FDC), LLC.

Donating Wholesome Unsold Food

Foodtank -- Despite a lot of great efforts from food companies and hunger relief organizations, there is still more food that can be recovered.


Since 1992, Food Donation Connection has assisted food service companies with the development and implementation of Harvest Programs designed to provide an alternative to discarding surplus food.


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