Feeding San Diego Awards Meals Rescue Van to Brother Benno to boost starvation reduction in North County

Darryl Harris, Operations Manager at the Brother Benno Foundation, picks up a new food ambulance from Feeding San Diego CEO Vince Hall. Photo courtesy Feeding America San Diego

Feeding San Diego awarded the Brother Benno Foundation, an Oceanside-based community partner, a new food ambulance the organization can use to save higher quality food to help fight hunger in North County. The cost of the specially equipped food ambulance was $ 70,000.

Feeding San Diego’s mission is to connect every person who is hungry to nutritious meals by maximizing food saving. Through a network of nonprofit and faith-based food rescue partners, Feeding San Diego coordinates the rescue of 13.1 million pounds of food annually in 530 locations in San Diego County. Another £ 13.2 million will be saved from outside the county. Rescued food accounted for 97 percent of the more than 26 million meals delivered to needy San Diegans last year.

“Feeding San Diego is investing in our nationwide network of food rescue partners and increasing their capacity to deliver healthier, more nutritious food to San Diego in need,” said Vince Hall, CEO of Feeding San Diego. “During this COVID-19 crisis, the demand for hunger relief services increased by over 50 percent. With so many San Diego Counties struggling to feed their families, we can no longer afford to land nutritious food in a landfill. “

The Brother Benno Foundation is one of Feeding San Diego’s largest partners. Last year, Brother Benno, working with Feeding San Diego, saved nearly 1.1 million pounds of high-quality food from local grocery stores and retailers that would otherwise have been wasted.

“Brother Benno is one of Feeding San Diego’s valued community partners, providing food and other services to the homeless and low-income people,” Hall said. “We are proud to lend them this specially-equipped food ambulance that will help Brother Benno increase the amount of nutritious food they ingest so that it can fall into the hands of those starving in North County To suffer.”

“Feeding San Diego makes it easy to carry out our mission, especially in these troubled times of COVID-19. Our partnership with Feeding San Diego has brought food to many in need, ”said Darryl Harrison, Operations Manager at Brother Benno. “It was a positive experience from the start. The van we just received exceeded our highest expectations. “

As part of a previously announced $ 500,000 grant from CalRecycle, Feeding San Diego purchased four specially equipped food ambulances and on-site refrigerators for several local partners, including the Brother Benno Foundation. Brian Maienschein, a member of the San Diego Congregation, has passed legislation to make this grant process possible through CalRecycle, as landfill food waste is one of the major sources of methane in the state. California is working to reduce statewide greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030. “Efforts like this illustrate the multiple benefits of environmental programs. On the one hand, bringing excess edible food to Californians who are not getting enough to eat keeps that food out of landfills, which reduces greenhouse gas emissions, ”said Ken DaRosa, associate director of CalRecycle. “But these grants also have the added benefit of caring for those who are food unsafe in our communities.”

Brother Benno works with Feeding San Diego to host a weekly drive-through emergency food distribution every Thursday at 10:00 am. Distribution serves more than 300 families on the north coast each week and is located at 3260 Production Avenue in Oceanside. Distribution is available to everyone in need without restriction or registration.

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