It highlights Simplot’s involvement in Foodbank’s Collaborative Supply Program, which produces over 3.2 million kilograms of key staple foods each year for food insecure Australians.
“The nature of food rescue and food relief is that we operate in a ‘surprise chain’, rather than a supply chain,” Foodbank CEO, Brianna Casey said. “At Foodbank, we don’t necessarily know what food and grocery items will be generously donated to us throughout the year. This is why we developed the Collaborative Supply Program to ensure that we regularly have high-demand staple foods like breakfast cereal, fresh milk, canned fruit and vegetables, sausages, pasta, and pasta sauce available for our front-line charity partners.”
The program involves Foodbank working with Australian farmers, manufacturers, ingredient suppliers, packaging providers and transport companies who produce, process, package and distribute staple foods using ingredients and services which are either donated or provided at a minimal cost.
Since 2008, Simplot has played a pivotal role within a team of suppliers who develop pasta sauce specifically for Foodbank through the program. The company donates its manufacturing facilities for four days a year to produce the sauce to distribute to Foodbank’s 2,600 front-line charities. 2017 saw Simplot produce its 1 millionth jar of pasta sauce for Foodbank through the program.
“Simplot is proud to be able to pitch in and help vulnerable Australians across the country through this innovative program. The mini-documentary we created together showcases just how the whole food and grocery industry can collaboratively work together in order to make a real difference for Australians who are doing it tough,” said Graham Dugdale, Simplot’s managing director.
Foodbank currently provides assistance to 652,000 people every month, with 27 per cent of these being children. However, due to a lack of food and resources available, there are still 65,000 people a month who are unable to be assisted by charities.
“The number of Australians seeking food relief from charities has increased by 10% in the last year alone, and despite Australia’s $20 billion food waste problem, there’s just not enough food to provide for these vulnerable Australians,” Casey said. “There are many ways Australia’s impressive food and grocery sector can partner with Foodbank to help end hunger in Australia, but it’s fair to say that our Collaborative Supply Program is definitely one of our most effective.”