Document Type


First Faculty Advisor

Dr. John Visich


food banks; food waste; grocery retail; supply chain; sustainability


Bryant University

Rights Management



ood waste continues to develop as a global issue, especially within the United States. According to 2020 data collected from the Economic Research Service of the United States Department of Agriculture, 10.5% of all households in the U.S. face food insecurity. Using grocery supply chains as a context, this study examines how food banks serve as sustainable resources for the distribution of recovered food to feed food insecure communities. Grocery stores, retailers, and other organizations acknowledge waste through the implementation of sustainable initiatives. Food banks and partnering agencies serve as an integral component of waste reduction. The primary data collection for this study consisted of exploratory research of food banks in partnerships with Feeding America and Hannaford Supermarkets. Based on a scoring system, two of the food banks are effective, one is neutral, and two are ineffective on an environmental and social effectiveness scale. Food banks must disclose the reality of food waste to make progress toward food recovery. Increased data transparency allows for more sustainable contributions to food bank and grocery supply chains. Findings from this study can be used to implement processes that minimize long-term impacts of food waste and strengthen the environmental and social effectiveness of grocery supply chains.