Food Industry Donations

Donating food during the coronavirus/COVID-19 crisis

In these unprecedented times, we want to work with you to support your community, while also avoiding the unnecessary loss of food and related goods. Businesses may also consider donating a certain portion of food or supplies to the community during the response efforts. For those businesses in a position to safely donate food to employees or hunger relief organizations, here are some guidelines and resources.

Guidelines and resources for donating food

Continue keeping the health and safety of community members at the forefront of all decision making about what to do with excess food. Public health and food safety, particularly for vulnerable communities, is the highest priority. Maintaining social distancing guidance, following Oregon Health Authority guidance for employers following the CDC guidelines for cleaning surfaces and hand hygiene and practicing proper food safety are the key standards that must be kept to ensure your food safely gets to community members.

Where possible, first consider providing excess food to your employees or employees of neighboring businesses.

Businesses that donate food, in good faith, are protected by the Good Samaritan Act, and are also eligible for a federal tax deduction (see Oregon Food Bank’s information on tax deductions). Work with your accountant or business manager for financial advice.

Donations of Food, Supplies and Services

Oregon Food Bank locations (Beaverton, NE Portland, Tillamook, Ontario & Columbia River Gorge)

We are coordinating donations with community partners in our areas of service through the COVID-19 response. If you have food, supplies or services to share with the community please fill out this form

High Priority Needs:

  • Food:  Packaged produce, distribution ready-packaged goods, and frozen bulk fruits and vegetables as long as they can be received into outside storage for repacking at a later date. We continue to prioritize meal building foods – produce, protein and pantry staples that best meet our current priorities and capacity.
  • Boxes: Boxes of any size in quantity. 12”x12”x16” preferred or boxes that vary a couple inches from this size. 
    • NOTE: These are being loaded with food and palletized, hence the need for consistent sizing.
  • Sealable To-Go Containers, any size.

Statewide and SW Washington

If your business is outside of the Portland Metro area, please connect with your community Regional Food Bank partner. They will work to review each donation against current capacity and resource constraints and will look for ways to connect donations with local hunger relief organizations.    

Most of the food we distribute comes from the food industry — from growers, packers, retailers, manufacturers and more.

If you have safe, edible food in any form, we can use it. We make donating easy for you. From off-grades to code-dates, we can turn your liabilities into assets that nourish families in our community.

We can combine donations to create new products, increasing nutritional value, shelf life and ease of preparation. We work with manufacturing and processing partners, using their expertise and capacity to develop new products from donated ingredients.

Our goal is to ensure that the fruits of your labor benefit those in need rather than being wasted.

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FAQs

Donation Benefits & Protections

Benefits:

We pick up donations quickly to free your space for your regular inventory. We work directly with major outside storage facilities throughout the state and can quickly transfer donations to our accounts, reducing your storage costs.
DEQ estimates average dumping costs at $150 per ton. Donating food reduces your disposal costs while providing valuable resources to families in need.
More than 477,000 tons of food goes into Oregon landfills each year. Of that total, Metro estimates that nearly half is edible food or food ingredients. Our food industry donors consistently tell us that employee morale goes up when waste goes down.

You may be eligible for state-tax credits and/or federal deductions based on your food donations to Oregon Food Bank. We give tax receipts to all donors.

Learn more about Oregon’s crop donation tax credit
Learn more federal tax benefits

Protections:

Under the 1996 Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Act, a federal statute, anyone who donates food in good faith to a food bank or gleaning organization is protected from all liability associated with that product. Furthermore, Oregon Food Bank and our partner agencies follow strict food handling and safety procedures to ensure that the people we serve receive the highest-quality food possible.
We can relabel and repack many donations to correct ingredient errors and protect brand integrity based on your specifications.
Oregon Food Bank trains and monitors all member agencies to ensure compliance with all applicable safe food handling practices and policies. Oregon Food Bank is a U.S. Department of Agriculture and Oregon Department of Agriculture inspected facility.
We never sell, trade or barter food donations.

Fresh Alliance Program

Fresh Alliance brings nutritious food to our neighbors in need and is a key component of Oregon Food Bank’s commitment to increase the nutritional quality of the food we distribute.

We work closely with local grocers and retailers to pick up donations of nutritious, perishable food, including milk, meat, produce and other dairy products.

Since its inception in 2001, Fresh Alliance has diverted more than 80 million pounds of food from waste and compost, and has been replicated by food banks across the country.

Grocery Partners:

Fred Meyer
Albertsons
Safeway
Green Zebra
Market of Choice
7-11
Natural Grocer
QFC
Ray’s
Roth’s IGA
Target
Cash & Carry
Thriftway
Walmart
Whole Foods

Our Facility

Our location in northeast Portland has enough warehouse space to safely store up to 4-million pounds of food:

  • 8,500 square-foot freezer
  • 4,000 square-foot cooler
  • 14 dock-level doors
  • 8 refrigerated tractor trailers
  • 7 refrigerated box trucks

Types of Products

We have the capacity to pick up, store and distribute the following types of products:

  • Fresh
  • Dehydrated
  • Discontinued
  • Damaged Outer Cases
  • Frozen
  • Dry
  • Surplus
  • Bulk
  • Canned
  • Code-dated
  • Mislabeled
  • Out of specification
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