JFS Perspectives

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Trader Joe’s Partners with JFS to Fight Hunger

Everyone loves Trader Joe’s, but those who visit the Weinberg Food Pantry with any regularity have a special affinity for the popular grocery retailer. Trader Joe’s Greenwood Village store is one of the largest in-kind donors to the pantry, supplying fresh produce, prepared foods, dairy products, bread, and even fresh flowers on a regular basis. Last year, Trader Joe’s donated 84,000 pounds of food, enough to make 65,000 meals.

The food that the pantry gets from Trader Joe’s is high-quality and fresh. It’s food that might not be sellable at full retail prices, but it is very edible. By donating this food to JFS, Trader Joe’s is ensuring that it doesn’t go to waste, which is a benefit to the planet and the global community. Plus, it’s helping people in need in our community.

“Our relationship with Jewish Family Service serves multiple purposes,” says Damon Castillo, assistant manager of the Greenwood Village store. “We’re managing our inventory. We’re supporting people who are hungry and food-insecure in our own community. We’re repurposing food that would otherwise end up in a landfill. And, we’re engaging our team members in a great cause.”

Trader Joe's volunteersTrader Joe’s goes beyond simply donating food. Crew members often volunteer in the food pantry so they can see what happens to the donated food and interact with the people who benefit from it.

“I’ve been to JFS and seen the operation,” says Damon. “A group of us recently volunteered and processed the food that our store donated. We saw families in need, including families with children. It touched all of us.”

By volunteering, Trader Joe’s crew members are more careful about the food that gets donated. “We train employees not to give JFS food they personally wouldn’t eat,” says Damon. “Our staff members get a firsthand understanding of why it’s important that we provide fresh food. No one wants lousy food.”

We are grateful to Trader Joe’s and its support of JFS and the Weinberg Food Pantry. It’s more than a donor relationship, it’s a partnership that supports the JFS mission to enhance the lives of people in need in our community.