One of our favorite parts about launching in new markets is learning more about local food recovery and food access work. We’re thrilled to be partnering with Second Servings in Houston by supporting their food access program with regular produce donations. Second Servings is on a mission to end hunger and reduce waste through its food recovery program.
We sat down with Barbara Bronstein, Founder and President at Second Servings so we could share their story with you. We hope you’ll be as inspired as we are!
Imperfect Produce: What is Second Servings’ mission?
Barbara Bronstein: Second Servings strives to alleviate hunger and end waste by rescuing excess prepared and perishable food from food businesses (such as hotels, caterers, sports venues, distributors, retailers, and others), and delivering it promptly and safely to approved charitable meal sites.
IP: How did you get started?
BB: I hated seeing good food go to waste from last-minute no-shows at banquets. I knew their food was paid for and in the kitchen. I learned that it was usually being thrown away. I spent a year arranging food rescues by one charity operating a soup kitchen and that had a refrigerated truck. Then I conducted a lot of research and consulted with experts, before launching Second Servings.
IP: How many people/organizations do Second Servings donate to?
BB: Our food helps nourish 135,000 needy Houstonians each year at 62 charity sites including soup kitchens, homeless shelters, day centers, low-income housing, and many others.
IP: That’s amazing. How much food have you recovered to date?
BB: In 4 years of operations, we’ve recovered over 2 million pounds of food worth more than $10 million from 175 food donors.
IP: What can people do to get involved and support your work?
BB: They can support our fast-growing operations with a gift in any amount, which helps us pay for fuel, drivers, and rescue supplies. They can also volunteer by contacting Ginger Cook (firstname.lastname@example.org) or they can help connect us to potential food donors, such as business cafeterias, hotels, manufacturers, or caterers in their area.
Thanks so much to the Imperfect community for helping us support Second Servings!