$22,268 – that was the grand total raised by the Laguna Beach Whole Foods Market for the Laguna Food Pantry through the store’s November and December Feed4More register donation program. Generous Laguna Beach shoppers gave at the register for a stunning total that beat out other, larger regional Whole Foods Market locations.
For its size, no other Whole Foods Market raised more. Whole Foods Market Laguna Beach topped its 49-store Southern Pacific region for “total donations as a percentage of overall store sales.” The store’s customer Feed4More donation program during the holidays provided $5, $10 and $25 breakfast, lunch, and dinner meals featuring Whole Foods 365™ products to families served by nonprofit recipients in its communities. Cash donations were also collected as part of the campaign.
JoAnn Ekblad, marketing team leader for the Laguna Beach store, noted, “The donation total speaks volume about the overwhelming generosity of the Laguna Beach community. Luckily, Whole Foods is a unique company. Rather than being handed directives from ‘corporate’ for a cookie-cutter approach, we have quite a bit of latitude in deciding the best way to operate our Laguna Beach store to meet the needs of the community. Our team members are part of Laguna Beach and are passionate about supporting the nonprofits that are important to our shoppers and neighbors. The Laguna Food Pantry was a natural choice for our Feed4More effort and we are pleased to make a significant contribution toward achieving our mutual goal: providing people with healthful, nutritious food.”
Throughout the Feed4More campaign in November, Laguna Food Pantry volunteers picked up weekly donations of selected items purchased by donors at Whole Foods and immediately used them to stock pantry shelves for the approximately 100 people who shop each day for their families. The $10,487 check will be used to purchase food in bulk from county food banks and help offset expenses.
The Laguna Food Pantry, formerly the Laguna Resource Center, provides free, fresh, nutritious groceries to low-income households. Families are invited to shop in the Pantry’s friendly, retail-style setting once a week. Located at 20652 Laguna Canyon Road north of the Dog Park, the Pantry is open from 8 to 10:30 a.m. Monday through Friday. It is run entirely by volunteers. New volunteers are always welcome; to inquire about helping to pick up, sort, and stock food items, call 949-497-7121 during morning operating hours. Learn more about the Laguna Food Pantry at www.lagunafoodpantry.org.