July 23, 2019
LONGMEADOW — Lovin’ Spoonfuls celebrated the launch of its food-rescue program in Hampden County yesterday at Longmeadow Open Pantry. With a goal to rescue and distribute fresh food that would otherwise be wasted, it will be delivering food to 17 partner nonprofits in Hampden County.
The event hosted speakers both within and outside the organization to speak about the launch, as well as a demo of what a typical delivery looks like. State Rep. Brian Ashe shared his personal story as a kid who grew up in Longmeadow on welfare, oftentimes going without food.
“I’m so happy you’re in Longmeadow today to show the good work you do, and show the people of Western Mass. the good work that is done,” he said. “Stuff like this is really near and dear to my heart, and it’s so important to me personally and professionally.”
Lovin’ Spoonfuls, established in 2010, serves nearly 40 cities and towns across Eastern Mass., focusing on perishable, nutritious food. Its rescues provide meals to more than 30,000 individuals every week. Partners in its move to Western Mass. include the Longmeadow Open Pantry, the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts, Big Y, and Rachel’s Table.
“One of the things that I was always troubled about was the waste that happens in the supermarket, and is there a way to capture that waste and have it go to people that really could use it and need it?” said Charlie D’Amour, president and CEO of Big Y Foods. “With Lovin’ Spoonfuls, we have a wonderful opportunity to connect that much more and in a very timely way … it’s food rescue for a reason because it would just be going to waste, and there’s an opportunity to have it not go into the landfills, but have it go and do some wonderful good.”
Lauren Palumbo, chief operating officer at Lovin’ Spoonfuls, noted that, between the organization’s six routes in Greater Boston and the MetroWest area, plus now Hampden County, it is rescuing more than 75,000 pounds of food each week.
“It has been a goal of ours for some time to expand into this region and serve the additional communities outside of our home base in the Greater Boston area, and it has taken a lot to get to this day,” she said. “We’re so pleased to now be on the ground working in Hampden County.”
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