Big Y, HP Hood Grow Partnership
Big Y Foods Inc. revealed the expansion of its partnership with local milk processor HP Hood at a June 7 event held at Hood’s milk-processing facility in Agawam, Mass., where the grocer also kicked off an in-store campaign in which customers can support Northeast farmers through the purchase of gallons of milk at participating Big Y stores during June, which is nationally recognized as Dairy Month.
The funds raised by the campaign will help farmers make physical improvements to their farms and buy equipment through the Harold Grinspoon Charitable Foundation.
To supply milk and other dairy products for Big Y’s supermarkets and gas/convenience stores, Hood now processes an additional 5 million gallons of milk at the Agawam facility and has hired 12 new employees. For its Agawam facility, the Lynfield, Mass.-based company buys raw milk from dairy cooperatives that purchase milk from farmers in New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Connecticut.
“Our partnership with Hood is unique,” said Michael D’Amour, EVP of Springfield, Mass.-based Big Y. “We have very similar core values and a passion for quality and service. This is the beginning of beneficial partnership for both organizations and the communities we serve together.”
“We understand the importance of local farmers for our economy and our environment,” said Harold Grinspoon, founder of the Agawam-based Harold Grinspoon Charitable Foundation.“Farmers don’t typically ask for help. They are genuinely appreciative of any support and use the money in creative ways to help support their businesses.”
Big Y and the Grinspoon Foundation teamed up last month to award 47 area farmers $2,500 each to enable them to make infrastructure improvements.
One of the largest independently owned supermarket chains in New England, family-owned and –operated Big Y has more than 60 locations throughout Connecticut and Massachusetts, with 10,000-plus employees.