Tyson Foods Continues Hunger Relief Efforts with Gleaners

It’s always a pleasure to see our members giving back to their communities. As we’ve documented here before, Tyson Foods makes it a point to aid those in need of food. Here is information on the company’s latest effort in partnership with Gleaners Food Bank:

Tyson Foods, Inc. donated a truckload of food to Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana today as part of an effort to feed people in need and promote public awareness of hunger in America. 

“There are millions of hard-working adults, children and seniors who simply cannot make ends meet and are faced with the realities of hunger and malnourishment,” said John Tyson, chairman of Tyson Foods. “We’re trying to make a difference in their lives by providing nutrient-rich protein and by increasing understanding of hunger in our country.”

To date, Gleaners has distributed over 300 million pounds of food and critical grocery products. In the last fiscal year, the food bank distributed nearly 21 million pounds of food, or 16 million meals.

“We are thrilled to receive this very generous donation from Tyson Foods,” said Cindy Hubert, president and CEO of Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana. “It is a fantastic effort that will help to exceed the National FFA’s goal of feeding 1 million people.”

Last year Tyson launched the “KNOW Hunger” campaign to raise hunger awareness. As part of the campaign, the company released the results of a survey which found that one in four Americans is worried about having enough money to put food on the table and that many Americans are unaware of how serious hunger is in their own communities. Raising awareness that hunger exists in every community in the country reinforces the campaign’s imperative that “We should all KNOW Hunger.”

Since 2000, Tyson Foods has fought hunger in the U.S by donating nearly 90 million pounds of protein. The company partners with Food Research and Action Center, Feeding America, Share Our Strength, Lift Up America and the League of United Latin American Citizens to raise awareness and help feed the hungry across the nation. 

Meat and poultry are excellent sources of heme iron, which is especially important for women, children and adolescent girls, who are often deficient in iron. For more information on the nutritional value of meat and poultry, go to: http://www.meatpoultrynutrition.org/ht/d/sp/i/26062/pid/26062

For more information on Tyson’s hunger relief efforts, go to: http://www.TysonHungerRelief.com/

Tyson Foods Honored for Support of Veterans, Military

Tyson Foods has been a long-time member of the Indiana Chamber, and the following report isn’t the first time its benevolence has been noted here. Kudos to the company for its ongoing support of American men and women in the military.

Two Tyson Foods team members – Russell Tooley, senior vice president of corporate and international human resources, and James David, pricing manager with the company’s consumer products division – were recognized as “Champions of Change” by the White House today. Each week, President Barack Obama’s Administration recognizes individuals and businesses that create jobs in the United States and make positive impacts in the communities where they operate. Different issues are highlighted each week and Tyson was chosen to participate in this week’s discussion about the benefits of hiring military veterans in the corporate world due to the company’s continued efforts to employ veterans, reservists and their family members.  
“These are the leaders this country needs, people who are working to build in America and create jobs in America,” the White House states on its Champions of Change website. The event was broadcast live of online at 11:30 a.m. CST, but will be available for playback on the White House’s YouTube channel
Tooley is instrumental in Tyson’s recruiting of military veterans for both the corporate headquarters and international teams. David was a United States Air Force Captain and now, in addition to his duties at Tyson, serves as an Executive Officer with the 22nd Air Force Detachment 1 Aircraft Maintenance Squadron at Little Rock Air Force Base. Tooley is one of six individuals recognized as a Champion; David is one of five military veterans who participated in the roundtable.   
“In my experience, current and former military personnel are quality hires for many positions at Tyson Foods,” Tooley said. “They’re well-trained and frequently have developed leadership skills. They also fit well with our culture, which places emphasis on honesty, accountability and dedication.”
Tyson employs about 3,000 military veterans and is a member of the American Logistics Association, which recently committed to hiring 25,000 veterans and their family members over the next two years. Tyson Foods also employs more than 500 military family members and veterans who help stock Tyson products at military commissaries. The company regularly makes a concerted effort to hire junior military officers who have received training from an outside agency on how to transition from the military to the business world.
Another way Tyson Foods supports the military is by providing differential pay for all employees called to active military duty, making up the difference between military compensation and pay they normally receive from Tyson. Since September 11, 2001, Tyson has provided $2 million in differential pay to almost 400 employees.
Other ways the company supports the U.S. military include:  

  • Since 2009, Tyson Foods has been a major sponsor and coordinator for Northwest Arkansas Honor Flight, which flies World War II veterans free of charge to Washington D.C. to spend a day visiting the World War II Memorial and other military memorials.
  • Tyson Foods has a Veterans Business Resource Group for military veterans who work at the company’s corporate headquarters. The group gives the veterans employed by Tyson the opportunity to become active in community initiatives like Honor Flight, and it is also involved in sending holiday care packages to fellow employees, family members and friends serving the U.S. military in the Middle East.
  • Tyson has been a winner of the National Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve Freedom Award, primarily because of the company’s differential pay policy. 
  • The company is one of the leading suppliers of food to the Defense Commissary Agency (DeCA) and has been helping feed the U.S. military and their families for more than 50 years. 
  • In recent years, Tyson Foods has also provided food for the Wounded Warrior Picnics at Walter Reed Army Medical Center and for certain welcome home parties for soldiers returning from overseas assignments.

Chamber Members Work Together to End Hunger (You Can Get Involved, Too)

Indiana Chamber members Tyson Foods and MediaSauce (Carmel) are working on a "big idea" project that will transform one of the world’s hippest music festivals into a venue to provide charity of the utmost importance. In an effort to combat childhood hunger, the companies (along with several others) are acquiring pledges from people to donate, volunteer in their own community or share the message — and Tyson will donate 35 lbs. of food product (the equivalent of 140 servings) for each pledge. And ultimately, if the goal of 1,000 people taking the online pledge is reached, a semi-trailer filled with 140,000 meals will arrive at the Capital Area Food Bank of Texas in Austin during the South by Southwest Interactive Festival (March 13-22).

The Pledge’s web site explains a record 30 million Americans are on food stamps, and food banks face unprecedented demand. Additionally, more than 12.4 million children are going hungry right here in the United States. (That’s 1 in 6.)

Another goal of the venture is to display how technology can be effectively used to galvanize people behind worthy causes. A press release notes:

“We want to show how simple it is to bring people together to help solve a complex problem,” said Scott Henderson, Cause Marketing Director at MediaSauce.  “With just one click, a person can feed 140 children. When you make it easy to share your message and support your cause, it is amazing how much more willing corporations and individuals are to do something to make a difference.” 

The campaign web site challenges visitors to help spread the word about childhood hunger in America, find ways to get involved with a food bank in their area and donate money to Share Our Strength.  The site encourages a deeper dialogue about the issue with a blog focused on this initiative and ways to collaboratively solve the roots of this problem. 

To learn more about the program or to make a pledge, visit the web site. We offer some due propers to Tyson Foods, MediaSauce and the other companies involved for tackling this project.