Boston-area Whole Foods Stores Back Food Bank

Shoppers at seven Boston-area Whole Foods Market locations can now help feed the hundreds of children who depend on The Greater Boston Food Bank for weekend, holiday and school vacation meals.

Starting this week, customers at the stores can buy healthy, kid-friendly foods at $9.99 per bag to support the food bank’s BackPack Program, which provides food to hundreds of children at times when they don’t have access to free or reduced-price school meals.

Noted Whole Foods North Atlantic regional president Laura Derba: “Supporting the nutrition and education of children is a cornerstone of our values at Whole Foods Market. Making these backpacks, filled with nutritious and balanced food items, available for our customers to donate is a simple, but important step we can all take together towards battling childhood hunger.”

The program currently helps children in the Lawrence and Lynn, Mass., public school systems, and this October will begin serving kids in the Boston public school system. Children under 18 account for about a third of the up to 545,000 people served annually by the food Bank.

“[T]he generosity of Whole Foods Market and its customers … will ensure that many at-risk children have something nutritious to eat,” said Catherine D’Amato, President and CEO of The Greater Boston Food Bank, which distributes over 31 million pounds of food and grocery items yearly to almost 600 member hunger-relief agencies in eastern Massachusetts.

Austin, Texas-based Whole Foods employs more than 55,000 associates and operates more than 280 stores in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom.

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