As part of its commitment to creating a more sustainable future, The Giant Co.has donated $1 million to Pennsylvania’s Harrisburg University of Science and Technology in support of its new Center for Advanced Agriculture and Sustainability, which will focus on sustainability and localized sourcing through high-tech food and agriculture.
The gift was revealed on Jan. 10 at the 2022 Pennsylvania Farm Show by Giant Co. President Nicholas Bertram, Harrisburg University President Dr. Eric Darr and Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding.
“Doing the right thing for our planet is a huge responsibility and also a huge opportunity,” said Bertram. “A more sustainable shopping basket helps reduce carbon emission, improve soil health, mitigate deforestation and increase biodiversity, which in turn will heal our planet. We can’t do it alone, which is why The Giant Co. is proud to partner with experts like the faculty and students at Harrisburg University to support a sustainable food future.”
Groundbreaking on the 23,000-square-foot Center for Advanced Agriculture and Sustainability at Harrisburg University is slated for later this year. With the help of an international network of engineers, scientists, entrepreneurs and industry leaders, the new center will aim to make cutting-edge research, education, career pathing in sustainability, controlled environment agriculture and clean-water initiatives possible.
“The Giant Co.’s transformative gift will enable Harrisburg University students and faculty to become a national leader in developing advanced agriculture and sustainability solutions,” said Darr. “We are thrilled to partner with The Giant Co. to identify challenges and implement efficient, sustainable and action-oriented solutions for our agricultural community.”
“Agriculture finds itself at the intersection of the most important issues of our time – food security, health and human development, environmental stewardship, commerce, and, importantly, the quality of life in our communities,” said Redding. “The Giant Co.’s commitment to Harrisburg University’s Center for Advanced Agriculture and Sustainability is strengthening our agriculture and food system, and in return, benefiting both Pennsylvania farmers and consumers.”
The Giant Co. is no stranger to supporting environmentally friendly initiatives, from the farm to its stores.The grocer unveiled last year a partnership with Rodale Institute, which develops regenerative organic agriculture solutions. The Giant Co.’s partnership with the nonprofit supports ecologically safe farming, sustainable retailing and efforts to eliminate hunger. Also last year, the company conducted a chainwide rollout for Flashfood, an app that eliminates retail food waste by connecting consumers with discounted food nearing its best-by date.
With more than 35,000 associates supporting nearly 190 stores, 132 pharmacies, 107 fuel stations, and 150-plus online pickup hubs and grocery delivery service in hundreds of ZIP codes, The Giant Co., based in Carlisle, Pa., encompasses the following banners: Giant, Martin’s, Giant Heirloom Market, Giant Direct and Martin's Direct. Parent company Ahold Delhaize USA, a division of Zaandam, Netherlands-based Ahold Delhaize, is No. 10 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2021 list of the top food and consumables retailers in the United States.