To make it even easier to give to those in need this holiday season, Big Y has transformed its annual Sack Hunger campaign from a $10 bag of groceries to a $5 donation to one of five food banks within the grocer’s two-state footprint.
In the past, customers would buy a Sack Hunger bag containing staple nonperishable food items that Big Y would distribute to that area’s local food bank. This year’s $5 virtual sack can be purchased at any register from among Big Y’s 71 supermarkets, Fresh Acres Specialty Market, or Table & Vine Fine Wines and Liquors. Additionally, customers can donate online.
To further support the greater needs within their surrounding communities during the pandemic, Big Y will match all donations throughout the program, which runs from Nov. 5 through the end of the year. Every $5 donation funds 10 meals for those in need of support.
“Throughout our 85-year history, we’ve recognized the importance of helping our communities,” said Big Y President and CEO Charles L. D’Amour. “This year is no different. We know that our customers and employees are eager to support families across Massachusetts and Connecticut. Our new virtual Sack Hunger bag makes it simpler for the food banks to do their work. And with Big Y’s matching donation, we anticipate even more help for our friends and neighbors as we respond to increased needs brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Big Y has donated an additional $250,000 to the food banks so far this year, in response to increased food insecurity throughout the pandemic. In addition to Sack Hunger, Big Y donates healthy food to the five food banks six days a week throughout the year. Most of last year’s almost 6 million meals consisted of donations of meat and fresh produce, bakery, nonperishable grocery items, frozen food, and dairy items. Over the past 10 years, including Sack Hunger, Big Y has donated more than $10.5 million dollars’ worth of food, or 21 million meals, to the needy. The five food banks are Food Bank of Western Massachusetts, Worcester County Food Bank, Greater Boston Food Bank, Foodshare of Greater Hartford, and The Connecticut Food Bank.
Additionally, for the second year, Table & Vine will team with The Crusher wines to donate $1 for every bottle sold of The Crusher Pinot Noir to Sack Hunger.
One of the largest independently owned supermarket chains in New England, Springfield, Massachusetts-based Big Y operates 83 locations throughout Massachusetts and Connecticut, including 71 supermarkets, Fresh Acres Market, Table & Vine Fine Wines and Liquors, and 10 Big Y Express gas and convenience locations, with almost 12,000 employees. The company is No. 72 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2020 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.