27 local grocery stores participating in Fresh Alliance program

first_imgThe Clark County Food Bank received nearly 6.7 million pounds of food last year. More than 25 percent of it, or about 1.7 million pounds, was recovered from local grocery stores — the most of any source. The recovery program, known as Fresh Alliance, accounts for more food than what’s culled from food drives and the U.S. Department of Agriculture combined.Fresh Alliance is a nationally recognized food bank program that gathers food grocery stores no longer want and distributes it to local food banks. It could be food that’s close to its expiration date or food that’s just not selling quickly enough.“Instead of throwing it in the dumpster or sending it back to corporate headquarters, they want to donate to our food bank, because it’s still good food. That’s the remarkable thing,” said Matt Edmonds, communications manager at the Clark County Food Bank.Volunteers driving refrigerated box trucks collect food five days per week, between 5,000 and 10,000 pounds daily, and bring it back to the food bank where it’s sorted, repackaged and distributed to food pantries around the area.“It’s what we start our day doing,” said Glen Jones, food and warehouse manager at the food bank.Volunteers typically return to the food bank by 10:30 a.m. with grocery store donations. And, Fresh Alliance’s contribution is only growing.The two local Costcos recently began participating in the program, and discussions are happening with WinCo Foods, which has four Clark County stores. Feeding America, a national nonprofit coalition of food banks, negotiates grocery store contracts so the new contract with Costco is being rolled out nationwide, Edmonds said.last_img read more