BC Dairy is donating $50,000 to Food Banks BC in partnership with 31 local restaurants serving meals featuring local dairy products. The donation will be distributed to food banks across the province.
With its Eat good, do good campaign, between May 9 and June 19 BC Dairy partnered with restaurants in Metro Vancouver, Victoria, and Kelowna offering a diverse array of menu items featuring locally made dairy products, and pledged a donation to Food Banks BC for each order. By the end of the campaign 49,735 qualifying meals had been ordered – from lasagnas at Old Spaghetti Factory to milkshakes from Fable.
“The past two years have been a challenge for many in BC, but for those facing food insecurity, it has been especially difficult,” says Ken Lobson, Executive Vice President of the Old Spaghetti Factory, which had eight participating locations. “Food Banks BC have been there for so many, including workers in our industry, that were among some of the most significantly impacted through the pandemic. There are angels at Food Bank BC that continue to be there for individuals and families that need help. We were excited to profile some of our menu items that are made with the delicious ingredients produced by BC’s dairy farmers and we applaud them for their generous support of this program.”
The campaign was intended to support families struggling with food security at this time, while simultaneously helping to drive business to restaurants recovering from the pandemic.
“For Food Banks BC the impact [of this campaign] is significant and two-fold,” says Dan Huang-Taylor, Executive Director of Food Banks BC. “Firstly, the funds are hugely significant and come at such a critical time as more and more people turn to food banks with so many struggling to keep up with the increases we’re seeing in living costs. Secondly, the awareness that this campaign raises about the work of food banks and the importance of partnerships such as this with BC Dairy is of such great importance.”
“Between Dec 2021 to March 2022, we saw the number of new clients registering at food banks jump by 83 per cent,” says Huang-Taylor. “One third of all food bank clients in BC is a child, and the number of seniors turning to food banks has increased by 20 per cent in the last two years.”
The Eat good, do good campaign is the most recent in a series of initiatives led by BC dairy farmers to support food banks since the COVID-19 pandemic began.
“When people in our communities—our friends and neighbours—are struggling with food insecurity, it’s something that really hits home for local dairy farmers,“ says Holger Schwichtenberg, Chair of BC Dairy and a dairy farmer in Agassiz, BC. “We want to do what we can to bring safe and nutritious food for everyone, and also to give back to the community that supported us when dairy farms needed help during last year’s floods. We’re all stronger when we help each other.”
To learn more about Food Banks BC and for a list of restaurants that participated, visit here.
About BC Dairy Association
BC Dairy is a not-for-profit association that represents BC’s 462 dairy farmers. The association supports the growth and long-term business success of BC’s dairy farms. BC Dairy represents BC in a strong national dairy system committed to providing Canada with high quality, responsibly farmed, healthy dairy products. BC Dairy takes direction from a Board of elected and appointed dairy producer representatives, and is operated by a staff team.