As Chicago's food bank, the Greater Chicago Food Depository is the charitable food distribution hub for Cook County. Located on the Southwest side of the city, the organization’s state-of-the-art warehouse distributes food to 400 member soup kitchens, food pantries and shelters through 650 programs.
During the last fiscal year, the Food Depository distributed more than 66 million pounds of food.
Most of the Food Depository’s product donations come in from food retailers and manufacturers that find a convenient, safe and reliable way to channel food to hungry people that might otherwise go to waste. These are products that could be discarded because of production overruns, labeling errors or changes in marketing direction. The National Good Samaritan Food Donation Act, adopted in 1996, and the Illinois Good Samaritan Act, passed in 1981, provide food donors with protection from liability claims.
Food donated to the Food Depository comes from more than 350 local and national food companies, grocers, foodservice organizations, produce markets and growers. About 700 food drives are also sponsored each year by local business, professional and community organizations, schools and churches. Last year, food drives brought in more than 874,000 pounds of food and more than $469,000.
All food donated to the Food Depository is inspected, sorted, repacked and labeled for distribution to agencies by volunteers and employees who operate out of the Food Depository’s food bank and training center.
Member agencies arrive at the Food Depository every weekday in vehicles that range from station wagons to vans to large trucks, to pick up food they have ordered from the food bank. In addition, the Food Depository also employs a fleet of vehicles that help to pick up and distribute food throughout Cook County.
How you can get involved:
- Volunteer: at the Food Depository or at an agency
- Advocate for hunger relief
- Donate to help feed families
Kraft is a leading corporate supporter
of the Food Depository.