News stories about American farmers euthanizing livestock, plowing under fields of freshly grown produce, and dumping raw milk straight down the drain have sparked outrage among consumers who, just a month or so ago, were showing up at grocery stores to find the shelves stripped bare.
Much of this country's agricultural production, and much of the supply chain that helps the agricultural industry operate efficiently, is geared toward supplying foodservice operators such as restaurants and school systems with bulk food -- food that can't easily, or cheaply, be repurposed, or sliced and diced into smaller packages to stock grocery store shelves instead. (When is the last time you popped out to Kroger (NYSE:KR) for a 72-pound wheel of cheese?)
With their foodservice customers closed for business, therefore, farmers have been faced with a choice between making expensive changes to their processing to repurpose bulk food for sale to grocery stores, or destroying their bulk food early -- losing any chance at making a sale, but at least avoiding additional expense.
Kroger, however, wants to help with that -- and also do its part to help out families struggling to put food on the table. As WTHR Indianapolis reports today, Kroger more than doubled the size of its Dairy Rescue Program last week. Between now and September, the company will fund the purchase, processing, and donation of 200,000 gallons of milk to American food banks.
Sure, compared to the 3.7 million gallons of milk being dumped daily right now, Kroger's program is a relative drop in the bucket -- but every drop helps.