Ahold Delhaize’s Food Lion added a digital component to its “Summers Without Hunger” cause campaign this year, collecting donations from shoppers throughout June to help provide meals to those most in need in its communities. The Food Lion Feeds effort raised $652,553 (equaling 6.5 million meals), the grocer said.
From June 3-30, Food Lion shoppers were able to make a $5 donation to Feeding America and 30 of its member food banks across the Food Lion service area both in stores and online this year in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. In-store shoppers could take a backpack-shaped hangtag from a store display and hand it to the cashier at checkout to make a donation, while shoppers opting for delivery or store pickup could add a designated "item" to their carts to trigger the donation. All funds went to the local food bank closest to a shopper’s store.
Participating CPG partners Kellogg Co., Campbell Soup Co., Hormel, Tyson, Seald & Sweet and PepsiCo/Frito-Lay’s Aquafina donated 1.5 million products to local Feeding America food banks in conjunction with the shopper donations. To kick off the campaign, each made an additional donation to several food banks.
- Campbell: 100,000 units of Lance crackers, peanuts and popcorn
- Hormel: 48,000 units of Hormel Chunk Chicken
- Tyson: 100,000 units of Tyson Chicken
- Kellogg’s: 250,000 Nutri-Grain bars, cereals and other foods
- Pepsi Co.: 100,000 bottles of Aquafina
- Seald Sweet: 100,000 clementines
Support for the campaign was heavy on digital activity in June, spanning multiple digital circular features, social media updates (see one below), email ads as well as a home page display ad on foodlion.com that linked to a dedicated web page detailing the Summers Without Hunger program and its CPG partners. A “Donate Online” button also enabled online contributions.
According to the same press release from the retailer, Food Lion additionally donated 100,000 meals to the campaign “to help address the unprecedented demand food banks are currently experiencing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Last year, the Summers Without Hunger program was focused on reusable bags. From July 10, 2019, through Aug. 6, 2019, shoppers could purchase a specially marked bag for $1 at any Food Lion store, and Food Lion Feeds would donate the equivalent of five meals (50 cents) to Feeding America food banks for each bag purchased.
Some retailers are forbidding the use of reusable bags in stores as a response to COVID-19, though Food Lion and its sister chains have now begun allowing their use again and are continuing to plug their branded bags in email ads, on chain websites and in stores as a way to reduce plastic use.
Food Lion has donated more than 500 million meals to individuals and families through its Food Lion Feeds hunger-relief platform since 2014 and has committed to donate 1 billion more meals by 2025, according to the release.