Over 4.3 million pounds of food rescued, 967,255 meals packed, 100 different food donors. Countless lives changed.
Our donor partners range from grocery stores to colleges, local restaurants, bakeries, farms, distributors, 4H, and so many others! No matter how big or small the donation, every gift has a significant impact on feeding our neighbors and eliminating food waste.
133 billion pounds of food is wasted every year. We’re building the logistics system and volunteer network to change that in our local community.
Hear from our Food Donors:
The focus of our sustainability initiatives is to prevent food waste. Donating food to Cultivate is a source of pride for everyone on our staff. It means that we’re feeding people in the community and saving the environment at the same time. Cultivate makes it so easy for us to accomplish our goals.
Watching Cultivate grow over the years has been great. Working with prepared food, it is often hard to estimate the amount needed. I feel comfortable donating to Cultivate because of their expectations and rules around food safety. Pick-ups are always very easy and smooth. We’ve built trust between one another so that we even swap out pans week-to-week.
With more than 1 million Hoosiers in need of food assistance, Kroger remains committed to its goals, striving to improve food access and create communities free of hunger. We proudly do that in support of essential partners such as Cultivate Food Rescue.
Food Donors Make Our Mission Possible
Trader Joe’s Store Manager
How does donating food to Cultivate work? No matter how big or small, every food donation is welcome at Cultivate! Our fleet of refrigerated trucks is out rescuing food seven days a week–sometimes from the same location twice per day! Each donation matters as we help fill local food pantries and the tummies of hungry kids in our community. We don’t charge for any of the food that is redistributed to our community thanks to these generous donations!
Our staff is focused on food safety and making the process seamless for our food donors. Each partner has unique needs and we work closely with them to ensure their needs are met and food reaches the community.
HOW DO WE DO IT?
Compassion, Volunteers, and a
whole lot of Logistics!
Local grocery stores, restaurants, manufacturers, and distributors let us know they have excess, good, unused food.
We send out our fleet of refrigerated trucks to rescue the food to prevent it from reaching a landfill.
Once that food comes into our warehouse our staff and volunteers organize it, inventory it, store it, prepare it, or package it into our trademark frozen meals.
These meals and other pantry staples are sent out to local churches, food banks, homeless shelters, and schools to feed the most vulnerable in our community.
like Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods
Grocery store donors are able to offer a vast variety of food for our clients. These donations provide high-quality, healthy, nutrient-dense, ingredients we use to feed hungry people in our community. This includes fresh produce, meat, dairy and more.
As inventory is ready to turn over, rather than throw food away, our grocery store partners have committed to giving food to us so we can get it to those in our community who are in need.
Some of these meals go to food pantries and homeless shelters while others are packed into backpacks for some of the most vulnerable kids at our local elementary schools.
like Rise n’ Roll, Chick-fil-A and Starbucks
Restaurant donors provide us with fresh food that they cannot sell in a day. From deli meat to fresh produce and food prepared but not served from catering events, our partners are committed to avoiding food waste.
Our volunteers are able to take the raw ingredients, cook them, and create healthy balanced meals. Any food that is already prepared, is quickly added to the food rescue meal packing line and put into our trademark frozen meals.
These partnerships are the epitome of Np Neighbor Hungry, No Food Wasted.
Schools and Universities
like Notre Dame
Partnerships like the one we have with Notre Dame are one-of-a-kind. Not only do they donate food from catered events, dining halls, and sporting events, but they also consistently make financial and volunteer commitments to our organization.
This partnership has created opportunities for us to share our message at home football games, fundraising dinners, and even on national television through the Cleats for a Cause program.
Distributors and Producers
like Stanz and Bimbo
What happens to food in the supply chain that never makes it to the grocery store shelves? This can happen for a variety of reasons like lack of demand, supply chain delays, and “best by” dates being too close for food to be sold. When this happens, our partners make donations to us to prevent food from going to waste.
If ingredients are raw we take special care to cook and create healthy balanced meals. Any food that is already considered prepared, is either donated immediately in it’s existing form to our food pantry and shelter partners or added to the food rescue meal packing line. As always, the goal is to take these generous donations and get food to people who need it most as quickly as possible.
Farms and 4H
Our local farms and 4H participants know the value of hard work. They also understand the effort and resources that go into growing food for our country. When they have excess crops or 4H animals, they often donate those to us. We take special care to properly prepare these generous gifts and use them to feed our neighbors.
It takes all of us working together to feed the hungry in our community and our farm and 4H partners are committed to doing their part.
Complete List of Food Donors
Donations of 50,000+ Pounds
Bimbo Bakery (NFI)
Marian High School
Milford Food Bank
University of Notre Dame
Donations of 10,000-49,999 Pounds
Canteen Vending Services
Church Community Services
Family Christian Development Center
(Martin’s Butchering, J&J Meat Processing)
Midwest Food Bank
Stanz Food Service
Donations of 1,000-9,999 Pounds
Bread of Life
Bristol Food Pantry
Clay Church Food Pantry
Meat Hunger: Rolands
Monroe Circle Community Center
Purdue Polytech High School
Purple Porch Co-op
Rise & Roll
South Bend Clinic
South Bend Community Schools
South Bend Cubs
St. Hedwig Memorial Center
St. Joseph Health System
Donating your leftover food to Cultivate lets the community know your organization cares about sustainability, hunger, and that you care about your community.
And if that isn’t enough, being a food donor to Cultivate also has tax incentives for your organization! Learn more about Federal Tax Incentives here:
Businesses and nonprofits that donate or distribute donated food or grocery products are well-protected by laws designed to provide immunity from liability related to food donations.
The Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Food Donation Act provides comprehensive federal liability protection to encourage food donation to individuals experiencing food insecurity.
Interested in Donating Food?
Drop us a note!
Just fill out the simple form below and we’ll reach out. If you’d prefer to chat on the phone, please call our coordinator Bob at 877-725-2016 Ext. 103.