2023 Best Social Service Initiative
Food insecurity is a serious problem in the United States, which was amplified by the Covid-19 pandemic. In the wake of the pandemic, HelloFresh and partners created Meals with Meaning with a laser-focused goal to provide healthy, nutritious meals to people in need throughout the US. In 2022, the program distributed 2 million meals.
HelloFresh sought to increase revenue, convert customers, retain customers and engage employees. The company aimed to increase consumer perception of HelloFresh as a company with positive societal and environmental impact by focusing on areas like food and packaging waste.
Many HelloFresh departments came together to build this program. Based on Distribution Center locations, HelloFresh selected trusted charity partners to enroll in the program, and then identified where the greatest need was in the community. The company’s Culinary Team developed inclusive, nutritious recipes, with an eye to who would be served by them. Recipes include Spanish translations.
The Procurement Team placed internal purchase orders for the 8,000 meals packed per week, per location. With the help of local charities, meal kits were delivered to homes, complete with ingredients and step-by-step recipe cards that explain how to prepare the food at home. Simultaneously, customers could “skip” their weekly box and opt to “Donate their box,” allowing them to contribute the value of their box to the program. Customers could also select to contribute cash–$5, $10, $20, or $50.
HelloFresh conducts a regular “pulse survey” among employees that asks if employees feel that the company has a “genuine” commitment to social responsibility. The latest results indicated that 71 percent of employees agree with that statement.
In 2022, 2 million meals were donated across five locations, and the program expanded into Phoenix. Through customer and supplier contributions (on top of HelloFresh’s program spend), the company raised an additional $2.48 million to support the ongoing efforts of the program.
Many suppliers and vendors have asked to contribute to Meals with Meaning brought employees of varied backgrounds and viewpoints together to collectively create change.