Forget the heavy lifting – donors ditch the cans for Virtual Food Drives.

How do we acquire food at Food Bank of Iowa? Thirty-one percent of our food comes from the USDA’s The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP), which is purchased from farmers and producers, then given to food banks across the country. Forty-eight percent of our food we distribute to our partner agencies come from donations. This includes donations from food producers or wholesalers, retail donations, and food drives.

What about the remaining 21 percent of our food? We use funds received from financial donations to purchase seldom donated products like milk, eggs, meat, and fresh produce – which benefits Iowans in need throughout the Food Bank of Iowa service area.

Companies and organizations have started to “ditch the cans,” and hosting Virtual Food Drives in lieu of traditional food drives. While traditional food drives are extremely important to our daily operations, the money raised from Virtual Food Drives allow us to maximize our purchasing power and product availability.

With our purchasing power, we are able to stretch $1 dollar further than your typical grocery or retail store. For example:

  • $100 can buy 10 cases, or 240 units, of shelf-stable milk
  • $500 can provide 2,000 meals
  • $1,000 can purchase 110 cases, or 2,640 units, of no salt-added green beans
  • $2,000 can purchase approximately 20,000 lbs., or half a truckload, of fresh potatoes
  • $5,000 can purchase almost an entire truckload (40,000 lbs.) of fresh produce

A Virtual Food Drive is a web-based tool allowing individuals and organizations to host a food drive through Food Bank of Iowa’s website. Donations can be made securely online giving everyone on your team a chance to see the progress in real time. With just a few clicks, anyone can purchase the most-needed items and make a difference in the lives of neighbors in need.

Learn more and start your own Virtual Food Drive here!