To facilitate this past season of giving food to those in need, Big Y converted its Sack Hunger campaign from a $10 bag of groceries to a streamlined $5 donation to the five food banks within its marketing area. These regional food banks support local soup kitchens, food pantries, senior food programs, children’s programs and more for the 2,100-member agencies they serve every day.
During last November and December, Big Y customers and employees contributed almost $300,000 to help their friends and neighbors in their communities. In order to expand their support, Big Y matched this contribution, bringing the total up to $600,000 or 2.4 million meals.
“We appreciate the generosity of our customers and employees in helping us to support our friends and neighbors in need,” said Charles L. D’Amour, Big Y president and CEO. “And, we are grateful to our partnerships with our five area food banks for their heroic efforts in serving those most vulnerable in our communities. Being able to provide another 2.4 million meals through our Sack Hunger program helps us to fulfill our mission to feed families.”
This past year has seen dramatic increases in food insecurity throughout the region. Big Y’s Sack Hunger donation is part of its ongoing support throughout the year including almost daily donations of meat, fresh produce and bakery along with grocery, frozen food and dairy items. And, based upon this past challenging year due to the pandemic, Big Y had already contributed another $250,000 in support of the food banks for their work with vulnerable populations.
The five regional food banks are the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts, the Worcester County Food Bank and the Greater Boston Food Bank in Massachusetts, as well as Foodshare and the Connecticut Food Bank in Connecticut. This year’s virtual Sack Hunger bags were purchased from amongst 71 Big Y supermarkets, Fresh Acres Specialty Market and Table & Vine Fine Wines and Liquors.
Big Y Foods Inc. is one of the largest independently-owned supermarket chains in New England based in Springfield, Massachusetts.