Detroit organization saves food from going to waste to feed the hungry

Metro Food Rescue, which began just before the pandemic, has seen need soar in recent months to near pandemic levels
Posted at 4:34 PM, Nov 24, 2022
and last updated 2022-11-24 18:27:40-05

DAVISBURG, Mich. (WXYZ) — It’s estimated, 40% of food in the U.S. is wasted. At the same time, 1 in 4 kids don’t know where their next meal is coming from.

Chad Techner, executive director of Metro Food Rescue, said he’s trying to bridge that divide. His organization joined forces with Springfield Township Fire, Homeland Security, Village of Holly Fire and Groveland Township Fire to host a big Thanksgiving meal giveaway.

Randy Harless is a lieutenant firefighter in Springfield Township.

“This area in Oakland County has a big need. It’s sort of unknown how much need is up here,” said Harless.

He said the need was apparent at Wednesday’s giveaway.

“We gave out all 400 meals. So we anticipate that’s feeding 1600 to 1800 people,” Harless explained.

He said the turkeys doubled in price from last year. Fortunately, he also works with Ally Bank and they were able to step in to fill the gap. He remarked at how grateful people were when they showed up to get their meal staples.

“Some of them, you could tell this was their turkey that they didn’t have that they now have. So they were very grateful,” remembered Harless.

Chad Techner is the executive director of Metro Food Rescue. He has seen need in in the Detroit-area shoot up recently.

“I’ve definitely been surprised by it. It fell off for a little while. And then through inflation and other things, the need has been continuing to grow and grow,” explained Techner. “And we’re approaching levels that were at the height of the pandemic.”

Metro Food Rescue is a non-profit that distributes extra food to their partners who then give it directly to families in need.

“We’ve been growing year-over-year and one of our points of growth is we’re going to be expanding here into the northern Oakland County area, Holly and Clarkston and some of these areas that are underserved, but there’s still a lot of need,” said Techner.

He knows many people will have leftovers following their Thanksgiving dinners but said, unfortunately, they can’t pick up that kind of food for health safety reasons.

“The best way that people can help is by donating money. For every dollar we get, we’re able to supply 10 pounds of food,” explained Techner. “So the more donations we get, the more we’re able to grow and the bigger our impact can be.”