Show 318, April 6, 2019: Patti Larson, Executive Director, Food Finders

Food Finders Long BeachThis month Long Beach-based Food Finders is celebrating 30 years of rescuing food and eliminating food insecurity in Southern California.

With thirteen employees and 300 volunteers, Food Finders rescues perfectly edible, unserved food from restaurants, caterers, grocery stores, bakeries, produce markets and other food vendors and delivers it within hours to nearby agencies such as shelters, senior centers, Boys & Girls Clubs, etc., that service the food insecure throughout Southern California. This rescue effort also reduces the amount of CO2 gasses leaked into the atmosphere by keeping discarded food out of the landfills.

A personal effort and passion that began at founder Arlene Mercer’s Seal Beach kitchen table 30 years ago, Food Finders has grown into an organization that has rescued 150 million pounds of food, equating to 125 million meals, since April, 1989.

“We’re proud of our efforts to reduce hunger and food waste over the last 30 years,” said Patti Larson, who succeeded Mercer as executive director of Food Finders in 2011 when Mercer retired. “But we still have a ways to go, considering 1 in 8 in Californians remain food insecure and yet the average family of four throws out $1,500 worth of perfectly good food each year.”

Food Finders 30th Anniversary fundraising goal is to raise $30,000 in financial donations during the month of April. For more information and how to donate, visit their website.

Executive Director Patti Larson is our guest to better explain the need.

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