Chicken Industry Gives Back

On April 3, 2020, in COVID-19

In addition to providing incentives and bonuses for our essential employees, taking extra measures to keep employees healthy and safe, and working around the clock to provide Americans with the food that they want, the chicken industry is stepping up to the plate, literally, by helping local communities with charitable and food donations.

Below are just a few examples. The National Chicken Council would like to thank the men and women throughout the whole supply chain who are working to try to keep chicken on the shelves.

Mountaire Farms

Mountaire partnered with Delaware’s Hocker’s Super Center to bring tractor trailer loads of chicken to the store, which it sold at a discounted price. The company also said it has donated 40,000 pounds of chicken to the Delaware Food Bank last week, and another 30,000 pounds to food pantries and Boys and Girls Clubs. In addition, Mountaire has increased its discounted sales for employees to weekly.

NCC’s Ashley Peterson helps load chicken in Delaware

Mountaire leadership offered to bring to Hocker’s 10-pound packages of “wingettes” and boneless thigh-leg combos for far below the normal market prices. Hocker’s held a second Mountaire chicken truckload sale on Saturday, March 28 that featured chicken tenders, as well as party wings.

The company is also donating more than 44,000 pounds of chicken to employees at Nanticoke Memorial Hospital in Seaford, Del., and Peninsula Regional Medical Center in Salisbury, Del., this week. In the past two weeks in total, Mountaire Farms has donated more than 120,000 pounds of chicken to food banks, churches, community groups, Boys and Girls Clubs and more in almost every county of Delmarva. They have partnered with the Indian River School District to provide chicken with school lunches delivered to families in neighborhoods thanks to the Schell Brothers, and with the city of Crisfield to give out chicken along with seafood from Handy’s Seafood. In North Carolina, donations have been made to various community groups, churches and government agencies to help feed families.

 Tyson Foods

 In the month of March alone, Tyson donated 16 million meals to Feeding America food banks, pantries located in Tyson communities and to the company’s team members, according to Tyson’s blog, “The Feed.”  That’s more than $11 million in protein for hunger relief in less than a month. In addition, more than 15 truckloads of product have been delivered to Tyson plants for distribution to team members and those local communities in need. This investment includes $2 million in community grants and more than $11 million worth of products donated by the company since March 11.

The company has created a Community Response Fund that will distribute grants and food donations to non-profit organizations working to help people in Tyson Foods’ plant communities across the U.S. Community grants will be awarded by invitation only.

Tyson team members load chicken for the company’s Meals that Matter program

At the local level, resources have been committed to create meal boxes containing non-perishable product for drivers, product has been donated to make sack lunches for students out of school and a mobile food pantry has been activated to name just a few examples.

Perdue Farms

Since March 1, Perdue has donated more than 300,000 pounds of protein to our food bank partners in Delaware, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina and Virginia to help the meet the increasing demand for food amid the COVID-19 crisis.

The company is also providing their production Associates with chicken products to take home to further ease the burden, as they are working long hours and might not be able to make it to the store or find it on the shelves.

O.K. Foods, Simmons Foods, Wayne Farms are also making chicken available to employees to feed their families. Wayne has also put up billboards in local communities thanking employees, healthcare, emergency workers and police.

Pilgrim’s

To date, Pilgrim’s is donating more than 600,000 pounds of product to its team members to ensure they have safe, quality food for their families, increasing each week.  The company is also providing cleaning supplies to team members in several facilities since they’re difficult to find in stores.

Pilgrim’s has donated chicken to local restaurants that are feeding people who need it during this time, e.g. kids who are out of school, hospital workers and providing lunches for team members and to-go meals for people to take home to their children who are out of school.

Simmons Foods

On March 25, 2020, Simmons Pet Food donated over 30,000 pounds of dry pet food to shelters and other organizations that work with seniors and other individuals who need assistance feeding their pets.

“In difficult times like this, we’re reminded how comforting it is to have the companionship of a pet,” comments Scott Salmon, President of Simmons Pet Food. “We salute the organizations that are helping to care for the people and pets in need in our communities. As a company with the purpose of making quality food for the families and pets we love, we believe this an important time to rally around our communities and do all we can to support them.”

Holly Poultry

The Howard County, Maryland deejay who went viral for his Facebook Live dance party during the coronavirus pandemic is giving back in a big way.

First, DJ Chris Kopec and his supporters delivered dinner to Howard County police. Then, as a result of 60,000 viewers attending a recent livestreamed dance party, Holly Poultry is donating 50,000 pounds of chicken plus an additional 10,000 pounds celebrating Kopec’s wife’s birthday to the United Way of Central Maryland, according to WBAL in Baltimore.

FreeBird

FreeBird Chicken is donating 40,000 pounds of chicken to The Bowery Mission in New York City. The Bowery Mission provides the homeless and needy in New York City with wholesome meals, a place to sleep and other social services.

KFC

This week, Kentucky Fried Chicken® announced it will send one million pieces of chicken to KFC restaurants across the country, earmarked specifically to support local communities in need through donation during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the company’s website.  KFC and its franchisees operate more than 4,000 U.S. restaurants, serving Americans in all 50 states, and has continued feeding America through delivery, drive-thru and carryout during this unprecedented crisis. Learn More Here

Blessings in a Backpack, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that provides meals to children who might otherwise go hungry, accepted a critical donation to help fulfill its mission amidst the country’s coronavirus pandemic. KFC U.S. has donated $400,000 to Blessings in a Backpack, which will go directly to provide pre-packed “Blessings Bags” filled with food for school children to keep them from going hungry during the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Kroger

Several volunteers and workers showed up at Southeast Christian Church’s Blankenbaker Parkway campus this week to unload 40,000 pounds of chicken donated by Kroger. The truckloads of meat were distributed to homeless shelters and food pantries in Kentuckiana, Kentucky. Volunteers and workers with Southeast Christian plan to drop off the donated chicken at more than 10 locations, including: Isiah’s House, Hope Southern Indiana, Catalyst Rescue Mission, HighPoint in Oldham County, Prodigal Ministries and Re:Center Ministries.