Mark Batenic, chairman of IGA and winner of Food Marketing Institute’s 2019 Herbert Hoover Award for Humanitarian Service observed that there’s no better place for consumers to find real community connections than in a grocery store. Batenic asserted, “There’s a moral compass that runs every company, and the head of that compass is integrity.”
According to Batenic, a food retailer’s emphasis on corporate responsibility establishes long-lasting personal connections within their neighborhoods. It’s what makes a brick-and-mortar store unique and a vital player in cultivating community spirit. Oftentimes the local grocery store best understands and addresses the particular needs of the community by providing customized incentives or special programs. And, in today’s fast-paced digitized world, consumers always appreciate a friendly smile and a face-to-face exchange.
While IGA and its retailers have made a lot of progress working together to support national causes like Wounded Warrior Project and Partnership for Drug-Free Kids, it’s IGA retailers’ unique means of serving as neighborhood cornerstones throughout America that make the real difference. Many host food drives, some establish after-school programs, others focus on health and well-being initiatives, and the list of grocery-supported charitable events goes on and on—all offered in the spirit of improving their communities.
The Food Marketing Institute seeks to recognize the community enriching efforts of the food retail industry through our Community Outreach Awards. We highlight food retail initiatives and programs that feed the rich industry tradition of community service. We ask that food retailers submit their best practice examples of programs designed to educate and mentor youth; impact the overall health or engagement of a community; or bring a meal to those in underserved areas.
Help us celebrate Grocers Doing Good. Community programs running from October 1, 2018 to June 1, 2019 will be considered for the 2019 Community Outreach Awards. Submissions will be open from June 10 until June 21, 2019. Let us hear of your efforts to serve the greater community good.