Wegmans Food Markets customers in Maryland and Virginia donated 109,968 pounds of food during a two-week “Fill the Bus” food drive to support local food banks’ increased summer needs. From Sunday, June 19 through Saturday, July 3 customers were invited to help “Fill the Bus” by donating non-perishable items that provide healthy meal options for children when they do not have access to free or reduced-price meals at school.
“The caring and generosity of our customers continues to amaze me,” said Wegmans Community Relations Manager Linda Lovejoy. “During this campaign, our Virginia and Maryland customers increased their donations by 28,000 pounds over last year, translating to a campaign total of 21,994 backpacks that were sent home with kids to feed them over the course of a weekend. This makes a huge impact on reducing hunger in local neighborhoods, particularly during a time of year when the need is highest.”
Service desks at the 15 participating stores posted wish lists of non-perishable items intended to be nutritious and easy to prepare, like tuna fish, peanut butter, and canned soup. Products to donate were also displayed by the registers and could be purchased at checkout and then placed in a “Fill the Bus” collection bin located by the front of the store.
Donations were collected and transported to the food banks that partner with each store, remaining in the immediate community. The food banks that received donations are listed below with the pounds of food collected, and in parentheses, the Wegmans stores that partner with them:
· Harford Community Action Agency – 5,172 pounds (Bel Air)
· Howard County Community Action Council – 4,135 pounds (Columbia)
· Anne Arundel County Food Bank – 5,512 pounds (Crofton)
· Frederick Community Action Agency – 3,800 pounds (Frederick)
· Manna Food Center – 2,387 pounds (Germantown)
· Maryland Food Bank – 7,858 pounds (Hunt Valley)
· Shabach Ministries – 2,268 pounds (Woodmore)
· Capital Area Food Bank – 8,001 pounds (Alexandria)
· Loudoun Interfaith Relief – 26,722 pounds (Dulles/Sterling and Leesburg)
· Food for Others – 24,442 pounds (Fairfax)
· Fredericksburg Regional Food Bank – 3,177 pounds (Fredericksburg)
· SERVE Inc. –7,221 pounds (Manassas/Gainesville)
· ACTS – 6,699 pounds (Potomac/Woodbridge)
· FeedMore – 2,574 (Midlothian)
In 2015, Wegmans donated approximately 14.5 million pounds of food to local food banks, food pantries, and soup kitchens across all of its market areas.