Benefits and Need
Your surplus food can be a resource for the community rather than a waste product you have to manage.
Top five reasons to donate
- It's safe and legal – Good Samaritan laws protect donors.
- You may be able to reduce the cost of your garbage bill.
- Your business will help reduce hunger and waste.
- Your donations may be tax deductible.
- Food donation boosts employee morale and strengthens community relationships.
Food waste and hunger in the region
The Portland metropolitan region throws away over 200,000 tons of food every year. That's 18 percent of all waste going to landfills. Waste disposal fees are based on weight, and some of the heaviest materials you dispose are food products. It costs over $18 million to truck our discarded food to the landfill and bury it, where it creates harmful greenhouse gas emissions. Not only do you pay to purchase the food in the first place, but you pay again to throw it out. (DEQ 2009)
Even if only 10 percent of what we tossed was edible, at a dollar value to food banks of $1.67 per pound, the Portland metropolitan region threw away an estimated $67 million worth of good food in 2009. Nationally, 40 percent of food in the United States today goes uneaten. This means Americans are throwing out the equivalent of $165 billion each year – rescuing just 15 percent of this food would feed 25 million people every year. (National Resource Defense Council)
Oregon consistently ranks among the top 10 worst states in the nation for outright hunger and food insecurity (meaning the number of people that are not sure from month to month if they will have enough food to eat). Your donations help some of the 260,000 individuals in this state who eat meals from emergency food boxes each month. Most of these Oregonians are working families, the retired or disabled. Visit the Oregon Food Bank site for more information.
A benefit to others, a benefit to your business
Businesses can help address both hunger and waste by viewing surplus food as a resource, not a waste product. Donation may potentially reduce your garbage costs, build employee morale, and provide food to people in need. Companies can usually take a tax deduction for food donations and food rescue agencies will provide you with documentation of your donation for tax purposes. Always consult a tax professional.
Follow Your Donation
Your food is too good to waste. Find out how easy it is to get surplus food to someone who needs it.