KIEV, UKRAINE — Cargill announced on Jan. 18 that it is providing $50,000 to help the development of a food bank based in Kiev, Ukraine.

A food bank is a not-for-profit organization that collects, stores, and distributes useable surplus food to social organizations, who in turn distribute or serve it to people in need in their local communities.

Cargill’s funding will be used to help pay for a refrigerated van, truck rental and other immediate start up costs such as insurance, supplies and warehouse rental. A number of Cargill employees donated their time to help the initiative, and one employee provided significant pro-bono legal advice during the start up of the food bank.

The food bank — the first of its kind to be established in the Ukraine — has been operational since June last year and is the 13th national food banking partnership that Cargill supports in Europe.

“Cargill recognizes that our continued success depends on the growth and health of our communities and partners”, said Andrzej Rozycki, head of Cargill’s business in Ukraine. “The United Nations estimates that nearly 1 billion people today suffer from lack of access to sufficient food. By 2050, global food production must double to meet the world’s growing food needs. We are extremely proud to be able to help support this food banking initiative in Ukraine. We believe that access to food is a basic human right and as such our partnerships with food banks around the world are part of a wider company effort to contribute to global food security.”

Since opening last June, a total of 101,880 kg of food has been collected and redistributed to over 265,000 people in need in the Kiev, Chernigiv, Donetsk, Vinnitsa, Jitomir, Lviv, Ivano-Frankivsk, Odessa, Kirovograd, Mikolayev and Poltava regions.

There remain opportunities to increase the size and scope of the food bank’s activities.