We’re raising the world’s expectations for how much good food can do. At Tyson Foods, we have more than 114,000 team members dedicated to that purpose, and in pursuing that purpose, we’re leading the way in sustainable food. Nowhere is that better reflected than in our work to build healthier communities, including our 16-year focus on hunger relief, as well as our Meals that Matter® disaster relief initiative, support of health and nutrition partnerships globally, education efforts, focus on environmental and sustainable agriculture, and community development programs.
More than $8 million was donated in fiscal year 2016.
Total Charitable Donations in Fiscal 2016
From our thousands of food bank donations over the years, grants to community organizations, and hunger-related volunteerism, we continue to focus on hunger relief efforts.
133,615 pounds of food donated for diversity organizations
We supported various state and national diversity groups, including the Arkansas Martin Luther King Commission, the League of United Latin American Citizens, and the National Urban League with product donations for various events and programs.
The KNOW Hunger Chicago program, made possible by a $150,000 grant from Tyson Foods to National Urban League, launches at the Greater Chicago Food Depository with a donation of 33,000 pounds of protein and a back-to-school event for Chicago school-age children.
Hunger Relief Programs and Partnerships
This year marks the 16th anniversary of support for our Hunger Relief Program, which is designed to encourage people to KNOW the scope of hunger in their own communities and get involved in relief efforts.
Team Members in Northwest Arkansas participate in one of our Pack Shack events to help support hunger relief in their community.
Tyson Foods partners with Feeding America and its network of food banks to provide financial and product donations, extra-hands, and pro bono volunteers, as well as board service and disaster-relief partnership. We have many projects with them, and they include the Tyson Foods Protein Sourcing Innovation Fund to help food banks in Tyson Foods’ communities with innovative sourcing projects and collaborations.
We also work with Feeding America when we deploy our Meals That Matter® disaster relief program to areas affected by a major tragedy.
Our Meals That Matter disaster relief team responds to Baton Rouge, Louisiana, following flooding that devastated the area.
Tyson Foods Meals That Matter disaster relief team provided and served 229,000 meals to victims, volunteers and first responders during Fiscal 2016. The Meals That Matter disaster relief team deployed to the following disaster sites:
- Baton Rouge, Louisiana, in response to flooding,
- Appomattox, Virginia, in response to a tornado
- Columbia, South Carolina, in response to flooding
Meals That Matter disaster relief team serving in Baton Rouge.
Donations of Food to Other U.S. Disaster Locations
Although the Meals That Matter disaster relief team may not deploy to all disasters, Tyson Foods still provides assistance to affected communities with product donations. During the 2016 fiscal year, Tyson Foods donated 347,527 pounds to nationwide disaster relief efforts, including the following locations:
- Oct. 2015 - Harvest Hope Food Bank, Columbia, South Carolina
- Oct. 2015 - Second Harvest Metrolina Food Bank, Charlotte, North Carolina
- April 2016 - Food Bank of Beaumont, Texas
- June 2016 - Mountaineer Food Bank, Gassaway, West Virginia
- June 2016 - Facing Hunger Food Bank, Huntington, West Virginia
- Aug. 2016 - Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank, Louisiana
Our Disaster Relief Partners
- Team Rubicon - We’ve partnered with Team Rubicon since 2013.
- Feeding America - We make use of Feeding America’s network of food bank resources, community contacts, storage, and volunteers when we deploy or send food donations to disaster sites.
- Salvation Army - We look for Salvation Army Crisis Centers for site setup during Meals That Matter relief team deployment.
- Bimbo Bakeries - We worked with Bimbo Bakeries for bakery items (especially bread and buns) during some deployments in 2016. We formalized this partnership agreement in 2017, as well as a partnership with Hugg & Hall Equipment Co.
Share Our Strength and No Kid Hungry
In Fiscal 2016, we began a two-year, $300,000 commitment, as a national innovation partner supporting after-school meals innovation for Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign.
Supper in the Classroom Increases Access to After-school Meals
We partnered with Share our Strength for Supper in the Classroom. The program is a proven way to reach more students. Schools that have tried it report more kids eat supper than lunch! Find out more about Supper in the Classroom and other innovative after-school meal programs at Share our Strength’s website.
The Umbrella Model Increases Participation in After-school Meals
As a National No Kid Hungry Innovation Partner we supported Share Our Strength’s pilot of The Umbrella Model in 16 middle and high schools. The Umbrella Model is an after-school meal delivery model that can boost student participation. Meals are available and promoted to all students, whether or not they participate in after-school activities. Find out more about the umbrella model and other innovative after-school meal programs at Share our Strength’s website.
Meals That Matter Hunger Hero Kenzie Henson helps distribute food at the Making a Difference Food Pantry she founded.
Supporting the Unsung Heroes of Hunger Relief
We know our company’s donations of cash and food for hunger relief make a difference, but we also know we can’t do it alone. That’s why we’re seeking out the unsung heroes who work hard every day to feed their neighbors and find innovative solutions to end hunger. We recognized three Meals That Matter® Heroes in Fiscal 2016. Watch their videos and learn more about the incredible work these heroes do in their communities.
Miles that Matter Engages Team Members in Exercise, Hunger Relief
In September 2016, we donated 50,000 pounds of protein to the Northwest Arkansas Food Bank in honor of the company’s inaugural Miles that Matter initiative.
Beginning in June, more than 500 team members from Northwest Arkansas participated in the program by walking, running or cycling on the Razorback Greenway. For every mile completed, we pledged to donate one pound of protein to the food bank, up to 50,000 pounds. Team members finished the summer with more than 12,000 total miles.
Health and Nutrition
One Egg’s Project in Haiti
In Fiscal 2016, we provided funding to support One Egg’s mission to create an economically sustainable egg farm in Haiti, providing eggs as a protein source to undernourished children. One Egg partners with preschools and orphanages to deliver eggs to children. By working with local suppliers of eggs, they provide a consistent demand for high quality product at a fair price, while partnering with poultry experts to help train the farmers in poultry science and farm operations. Team members from Tyson Foods and our subsidiary Cobb-Vantress provide skills-based volunteering for One Egg projects as well as poultry expertise. The children who receive eggs through One Egg have seen marked improvements in physical development and higher attendance rates at schools.
This early intervention is laying the foundation to support the physical and mental development for each participating child.
Upward Academy – Supporting and Engaging Immigrant Team Members
In collaboration with the Cisneros Center for New Americans, we piloted a new workplace education program, called Upward Academy, at three of our processing locations in Northwest Arkansas to focus on the unique needs of immigrant team members and improve engagement of team members at Tyson Foods and in our communities. The program has seen tremendous early success.
Upward Academy Success in Fiscal 2016
Upward Academy’s mission is to elevate team members and community partnerships by providing free and accessible ESL, GED, citizenship, and functional literacy classes to all plant team members. In addition to these core classes, the program also provides workshops on financial and tax literacy, legal issues, healthcare, safety, and accessing community resources and services. Ultimately, the vision is to establish Tyson Foods as an industry leader in employee care by providing an innovative, best-practices-based, and on-site workplace education program.
Students enjoyed our interactive booth at the 89th Annual National FFA Convention and Expo from Oct. 19-22, 2016, in Indianapolis. More than 60,000 people attended the convention in which students were encouraged to use social media, specifically Snapchat, and our company-sponsored #myAGstory.
National FFA Organization
Our partnership with the National FFA Organization in Fiscal 2016 included financial support for FFA’s Living to Serve hunger relief and environmental initiatives, agriculture literacy and advocacy, continued national officer training at Tyson Foods corporate office, career development events, and the My Journey/Ag Career Network. In addition, our team members participated in numerous volunteer activities, and we helped support the FFA National Convention.
Environment and Sustainable Agriculture
Tyson Foods Fellows™ Program
We developed the Tyson Foods Fellows program to share our knowledge about food production, agriculture, and sustainability with people in need around the world. By engaging our team members to work with partner organizations on specific projects, we hope to extend our reach beyond our domestic hunger relief efforts to areas of the world that rely on subsistence agriculture and don’t have the capabilities of producing a sustainable source of food. Aside from giving food or money, we know that teaching others can have a far-reaching and long-lasting impact, long after we leave.
Volunteers help with tree planting along the Kings River as a part of our Nature Conservancy partnership in Fiscal 2016.
Our partnership with the Nature Conservancy’s Arkansas Chapter in 2016 included a grant and volunteer support to help the chapter restore a section of the Kings River watershed, monitor sediment reduction, and survey a tributary and plan its restoration. The donation and volunteer support will also help complete projects on the Elk River and build on enrolling conservation easements in the Buffalo National River watershed. These efforts will help reduce erosion and subsequent sedimentation in three priority watersheds in the Ozark Mountains.
Tyson Family and Tyson Foods Give $15 Million to Arkansas Children’s Northwest
The Tyson Family and Tyson Foods made a significant investment in the Northwest Arkansas region with a gift of $15 million for the construction of Arkansas Children’s Northwest. The children’s hospital is being built in Springdale, Arkansas, and will serve all of Northwest Arkansas. Read the news release.
Arkansas Children’s Northwest Tyson Family Tower is unveiled at a news event announcing a $15 million gift from the Tyson Family and Tyson Foods to Arkansas Children’s.
Pro Bono Day Makes Lasting Impact
As a company, one of the ways we give back is by supporting the communities in which we live and work. In late June, Springdale, Chicago and Dakota Dunes team members participated in a Community Impact Day, a pilot pro bono program offered through a partnership with the Taproot Foundation that allows professionals to share their time and talents to help nonprofit organizations build capacity. We participated in done-in-a-day volunteer events at all three corporate office locations.
- Springdale marketing team members helped the Ozark Literacy Council (OLC) develop a strategic marketing plan.
- Five Chicago team members assisted Purple Asparagus – a nonprofit that educates children, families and the community about eating that’s good for the body and the planet – with its performance measurement support.
- Some of our warehouse team members in Dakota Dunes helped the Food Bank of Siouxland improve its warehouse systems.
Supporting the Jones Center in Northwest Arkansas
Tyson Foods provided a $1 million donation for operating costs to the Jones Center in Springdale, Arkansas, in December 2015 and a $750,000 donation to the center in August 2016 for the interior renovation and expansion of its fitness center and food court area. The Jones Center provides multi-generational social, education, business, and recreational opportunities to an estimated one million visitors annually. Read the news release.