Simplot recognised for its role in addressing hunger in Australia
Simplot Australia has received the 2018 Foodbank Award in recognition of its outstanding contribution to tackling food insecurity in Australia.
The award was presented during the ‘Celebrating the Industry’ dinner at the Food & Grocery Australia conference held by the Australian Food & Grocery Council (AFGC) in Melbourne today.
On announcing the 2018 recipient of Foodbank’s highest accolade, Brianna Casey, CEO of Foodbank Australia, said: “We ask a lot of our food and grocery partners because there is much to do if we’re to eliminate hunger in Australia and we cannot achieve anything without them. I’m grateful to say that unfailingly they answer our call and make their crucial contribution with commitment and passion. It’s important to stop and reflect on what we accomplished together and celebrate the outstanding individual contributions that make such a difference.”
The Foodbank Award is presented annually to a company for showing vision, innovation and leadership in working with Foodbank. Simplot Australia has been a partner in the world-leading Collaborative Supply Program for six years. Last year saw the milestone reached of 1 million jars of Leggo’s Pasta Sauce from Simplot’s Echuca factory donated to Foodbank, helping to ensure the regular supply of this key staple product in Foodbank warehouses.
Ms Casey explained: “The program has achieved sustainability because of Simplot’s willingness to encourage the other companies involved in its supply chain. The production of Leggo’s Pasta Sauce involves 12 suppliers, the largest number of partners in any Collaborative Supply Program. Eight of these support the program by donating their contributions. In addition to Simplot, this includes Kagome, Ingredion, Invicta, Sunshine Sugar (Manildra Group), Amcor, Mathews and Cheetham Salt with additional funding from the Flight Centre Foundation.”
Graham Dugdale, Managing Director of Simplot Australia, received the award which was presented by Phillip Austin, President of CHEP Asia Pacific.
Acknowledging the relationship with Foodbank when the 1 millionth jar of Leggo’s rolled off the production line, Mr Dugdale said: “We are very proud of partnering with Foodbank as it works to deliver nutritious meals to disadvantaged Australians, making a difference to the lives of people in need.”
In a second presentation, Former AFGC Chair, Enzo Allara AM, was inducted into the Foodbank Hall of Fame for making a significant contribution to the organisation, demonstrating leadership, innovation and impact thereby being an inspiration and role model to others in the scope and depth of his support.
Pronouncing the induction, Ms Casey said: “There is no more worthy candidate than Enzo. Under his watch as Chair of Foodbank Australia for 13 years, Foodbank experienced phenomenal growth and consolidation. When he joined the Board of Foodbank Australia, the organisation was collecting just over 3 million kilograms of surplus food and groceries nationally. In his last year in the chair it was collecting 10 times that and also collaborating with the food industry to manufacture a further 3 million kilograms of key staple products. At the same time there was a shift in the proportion of staple foods collected by Foodbank from 20% of the total to around 80%.”
“Enzo not only guided Foodbank through this period of growth but leveraged his own significant influence and contacts within the food industry to open doors and achieve the collaboration required. Enzo was a passionate and tireless champion for Foodbank guiding the organisation to the point where it is now, the undisputed foundation of Australia’s food relief services.”
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Foodbank is Australia’s largest hunger relief organisation, food and groceries to over 2,400 charities and 1,750 schools. Last year Foodbank distributed over 37 million kilograms of food and groceries - that’s the equivalent of over 183,000 meals a day. Foodbank accounts for 65% of all the food distributed to charities by food rescue organisations in Australia.
Foodbank works with the entire Australian food and grocery industry including farmers, wholesalers, manufacturers and retailers. Donations include stock that’s out of specification, close to expiry or excess to requirements. Companies also make donations as part of a commitment to social responsibility or a cause-related marketing campaign.
In addition, Foodbank collaborates with suppliers, manufacturers and transporters in programs to source key staple foods that don’t come in sufficient quantities via rescue channels.
For more information please visit www.foodbank.org.au.