The money will go to help bring food to rural areas, a critical need since residents in those areas are often far from any safety net services. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, about 15% of rural households in the U.S. are at risk of hunger.
Over the next two years, ADM will fund $30,000 grants to 30 Feeding America member food banks in 21 states for mobile distributions. On average, a $30,000 grant provides six mobile distributions within each food bank's counties, including food, transportation and promotional costs.
The mobile units will be operated by their local Feeding America member food banks. Volunteer outreach opportunities also will be identified in local communities, matching ADM employees and customers with local food banks.
"Getting food to everyone — especially those families in rural areas that may have trouble connecting with one of our member agencies is critical," said Matt Knott, interim president and chief executive officer (CEO) of Feeding America. "Thanks to the generosity of ADM, our food banks will be able to distribute much needed food like fresh produce, dairy products and meat, to low-income families in remote and rural locations, which are traditionally the most difficult for us to serve."
The contribution was made through ADM Cares, a social investment program that directs funds to initiatives and organizations that drive meaningful social, economic and environmental progress worldwide. The program comprises three distinct focus areas: supporting the responsible development of agriculture, improving the quality of life in ADM communities and fostering employee giving and volunteer activities.
"ADM is committed to making a difference in the places where we live and work, and especially in the wake of this year's severe drought, we believe it is critical to address the issue of hunger in rural communities," said ADM chairman and CEO Patricia Woertz. "The mobile food banks we are supporting will help to deliver food to people who are not only in need, but who may live a long way from their closest food bank."