If you’ve been on or around our campus over the past few months, you may have noticed a large construction zone near our Food Bank Distribution Center. Since the spring, Feed More has been working on a very special project to help better serve our neighbors in need. We are pleased to share that construction is complete and the new Pauley Family Cooler is in full service!
The idea for a new, larger cooler first came about with our strategic goal to increase the amount of fresh produce distributed to our nearly 300 agencies from 20 percent fresh food delivered to 40 percent.
“We knew that it wasn’t possible to move and distribute that additional 20 percent of produce fast enough in our existing cooler,” said Annie Andrews, Director of Operations at Feed More. “So having a larger one made the most sense.”
At nearly 6,000 square feet, the new cooler has tripled our refrigerated storage space! The new cooler has two different temperatures zones to help ensure refrigerated items are cooled to the proper temperature. It also is equipped with units that remove ethylene gas, helping to further extend the life of our produce. Our existing cooler wasn’t left out of the project either. It’s being turned into a fully functioning freezer- a move that will save Feed More approximately $100,000 per year in off-site storage costs we currently pay to store frozen food products.
Through this generous gift from the Pauley Family Foundation, we’re thrilled to be able to dramatically increase the number of fresh products those in our service will receive. Between 60-70 percent of our recipients report that either they or someone in their household live with an illness that can be linked back to poor diet, including diabetes, obesity and heart disease. For people living with these health issues, a more nutritious diet, one filled with fresh produce, is one key to better health.
“All the way around the cooler has been a fantastic addition to our warehouse,” shares Annie. “We’re able to get more produce out the door to the people in our service area who really need it and help them improve their diets to maintain a happier and healthier life.”