Detroit, Forgotten Harvest to collect surplus food to give to those in need

Christine Ferretti
The Detroit News

Detroit — The city is teaming with Forgotten Harvest to gather surplus food during the coronavirus outbreak and ensure it gets to residents in need. 

Officials announce the "Food Rescue" program on Thursday, noting the partners have set up a process for businesses to donate surplus food so that it doesn't go to waste while service slows or shuts down due to statewide precautions instituted Monday that required bars, restaurants and other venues to close to curb spread of the virus.

Donations will provide eligible and participating businesses with a tax deduction. 

“These are unprecedented times and we need to find creative solutions to all work together and support those in our community that are most in need,” said Charity Dean, director of the city’s Department of Civil Rights, Inclusion & Opportunity. “This approach works for everyone. It helps get food to those who need it and it helps businesses get rid of surplus food and support their bottom line by receiving a tax credit.”

Starting Thursday, the program is being extended to restaurants with surplus food waste due to the coronavirus pandemic and the ability to transport it to a nearby agency. 

Restaurants with more than 500 pounds of food to donate are eligible to coordinate pick up by Forgotten Harvest. 

To participate, businesses can gather information and a required form online. They then will receive email instructions directing them to a nearby agency and details on tracking their donation.

Acceptable donations include food prepared less than four days prior to its delivery, in foil pans with secured lids and that have been properly labeled and refrigerated.