Food banks around the world are experiencing dramatic increases in demand for food assistance driven by the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. International Paper is responding with one of its essential products – corrugated boxes. The company has committed to donating two million corrugated boxes to hunger-relief organizations. This product donation will benefit hunger-relief organizations such as Feeding America® and The Global FoodBanking Network (GFN), among other relief agencies in communities where International Paper employees live and work.
“Our employees are passionate about supporting critical community needs, and we recognize that our boxes are essential for distributing food to people hit hardest by the pandemic,” said Mark Sutton, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “Our employees and our boxes are helping improve the ability of food banks to serve communities around the world.”
Lisa Moon, president and CEO, The Global Food Banking Network, agrees. “Many food banks have had to shift their model from serving daily hot meals to distributing food rations in boxes. International Paper’s gift of two million boxes is extraordinary and desperately needed. Without boxes, we simply cannot get food to people,” said Moon.
Feeding America, the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief organization, estimates that an additional 17.1 million Americans could face hunger in the next six months as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. “Ensuring the health and safety of our staff, volunteers and our neighbours while serving our communities is Feeding America’s top priority. We are tremendously grateful for International Paper for their donation of boxes – an essential component of food distribution during the pandemic,” said Claire Babineaux-Fontenot, CEO of Feeding America.
The Global FoodBanking Network believes the coronavirus pandemic could double the number of people facing life-threatening food shortages.
International Paper has launched a social media campaign — #HelpFillTheBoxes — to encourage those who are able to donate to food banks in their communities. Taking action in the fight against hunger during the pandemic can be as simple as volunteering at a local food bank or donating money or resources.