A partnership between Mars Food Australia and Foodbank has launched a collaborative supply program to provide more than 600,000 meals to Australians in need.
Mars Food Australia) will donate 175,000 jars and bottles of dinnertime products to Foodbank including Dolmio Bolognese and Carbonara Sauce, Kan Tong Butter Chicken Simmer Sauce and MasterFoods Tomato Sauce. The four products will be manufactured specifically for Foodbank and supplied each quarter.
Foodbank’s CEO Brianna Casey said the partnership will help meet the growing demand for food relief.
“We’re responsible for ensuring essential food relief can remain available in spite of lockdowns, border closures and panic buying.
“Unpredictable employment patterns and the broader economic fallout from COVID-19 has meant we have had to increase the quantity of food we’re providing to Australians from all walks of life,” said Casey.
Demand for food relief increased by 47 per cent during the COVID-19 lockdown in 2020, with three in 10 Australians being food insecure for the first time in their lives. During this period Foodbank obtained close to 49 million kilograms of food and groceries for people in need.
The collaborative supply program means Foodbank has a steady, planned supply of food products will help meet the logistical challenge of getting food to hundreds of thousands of Australians doing it tough.
“This program helps Foodbank turn our food and grocery ‘surprise chain’ based on ad hoc donations and unpredictable food rescue opportunities, into a predictable, reliable ‘supply chain’,” Casey said.
Mars Food Australia general manager Bill Heague said the company was committed to helping tackle growing food insecurity in Australia.
“Last year, through our monthly ad hoc Foodbank donations, we delivered 265,700 meals to people in need. But the pandemic made food insecurity an even bigger issue in our society, and we knew we could do more. We talked with Foodbank about what help they needed most, and a consistent supply of food products came out on top,” said Heague.
The company has a global commitment of providing 25 million meals to those in need, with its Australian business expected to donate one million meals by the end of 2021, with 60 per cent allocated to Foodbank.