Industry Response in the Wake of Hurricane Sandy
It has been one week since Hurricane Sandy (one of the worst storms to ever hit the United States), and many parts of the East Coast are still feeling the effects. While some areas remain without heat and power, and others are try to rebuild from wind and water damage, many natural and organic food distributors have stepped up to help the victims of Sandy by providing food and supplies in many devastated locations.
Many businesses are partnering with well-known relief efforts such as the American Red Cross and the Salvation Army. Through November 9, Kiss My Face is donating 50% of its product sales revenue to the American Red Cross to support the victims of Hurricane Sandy. Kellogg’s (owner of brands like Kashi and Morningstar Farm) has also promised a $500,000 donation, with $250,000 to the American Red Cross and $250,000 to the organization Feeding America.
Many other natural businesses have supported hurricane relief through Nourish America with food and supplement donations. Clif Bar provided over 750,000 bars and Kay’s Naturals contributed 11 pallets of high protein chips and cereals. Donations were also received from Sedona Labs with thousands of bottles of supplements. The company Plum Organics has also collaborated with Convoy of Hope, by donating more than 150,000 organic meals and snacks for babies, toddlers and children. While Hurricane Sandy has brought disaster to the east coast, natural food companies are working hard together to try to bring food and relief to victims as soon as possible.
Justin's is hoping to engage election voters while helping hurricane victims. For every vote placed until the election through the iVote Mobile app, a peanut butter squeeze pack will be donated to families and relief workers. Justin's has committed to sending as many as 250,000 packs!
The massive storm surge from Hurricane Sandy was especially hard on Coney Island in New York. With flood waters four to six feet high and no way in or out due to little or no transportation, families remain stranded, waiting for help.
According to NYPost.com, vice president of EcoMeal Organic, Eugene Koshul, an organic food distributor, parked a company truck at Brighton Beach and Coney Island Avenues on November 3 to provide free yogurt, eggs, milk, cheese and juice for victims in need. “It’s all fresh,’’ he said. “Nothing that has been sitting around.’’
Koshul, 24, grew up in Brighton Beach, contributed although he doesn’t usually deal with consumers directly. “My grandmother and other elderly people live there. They’re basically helpless,’’ he said.
EcoMeal Organic, with help from Organic Valley, Smart Balance, Lifeway Kefir and Happy Baby, has brought 600 cases of products to support the cause. The truck will remain parked at this location until supplies run out.
The Natural Products Association has created the NPA Hurricane Sandy Relief Fund. Contributions will be disbursed to the American Red Cross, Salvation Army or NPA Retailer Relief, which will help member retailers that suffered damages from the storm.
To donate, visit:
American Red Cross: www.redcross.org
Nourish America: www.nourishamerica.org
Convoy of Hope: www.convoyofhope.org
Natural Products Foundation: www.NaturalProductsFoundation.org/Sandy
Published in WholeFoods Magazine, December 2012 (online 11/5/12)