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Customer Snapshot

Feeding More People with the Help of Mobile Technology

$1 saved

= 8 more meals

can be served


Right now, about 50 million Americans are food-insecure, meaning they don't know where their next meal is coming from, mainly because they cannot afford to buy food for their family. The largest relief organization in the USA, Feeding America, runs more than 200 food banks—distributing billions of pounds of food each year.


1.5 million tons of food is delivered to
37 million people
each year.


Feeding America


Chicago, lllinois, USA

Customer Website



Charity, Donation based

Number of Employees


Implementation Partners


Line of Business

Supply Chain


Public Sector

Featured Products

SAP Mobile Platform


Nearly 50 years of banking rescued food
for the hungry

Nearly 50 Years of Banking Rescued Food for the Hungry

It all started in 1965 when a retired businessman named John van Hengel decided to do something to help. He was volunteering in a Phoenix, Arizona soup kitchen, and began soliciting food donations for the kitchen. He ended up with far more food than the kitchen could use in its operations. Around this time, he spoke with one of the clients, who told him that she regularly fed her family with discarded items from the grocery store's garbage bins. She told him that the food quality was fine, but that there should be a place where unwanted food could be stored and later accessed by people who needed it, similar to how banks store money.


  • 1965Van Hengel began to actively solicit grocrey stores, local gardens, and produce farms, getting them to donate food that was still edible, but with damaged packaging, or nearing expiration. His effort led to the creation of St. Mary's Food Bank, the nation's first.
  • 1975St. Mary's was given a federal grant to assist in developing food banks across the nation. This effort was formally incorporated into a separate non-profit organization in 1976.
  • 2001America's Second Harvest merged with Foodchain, at that time the nation's largest food-rescue organization.
  • 2007Featured on American Idol, in the "Idol Gives Back" charity program.
  • 2008The organization name was changed to Feeding America better convey their mission.
  • 2009Columbia Records announced that all U.S. royalties from Bob Dylan's album titled"Christmas in the Heart" would be donated to Feeding America, in perprtuity.
  • 2012Feeding America launched Hunger Action Month to raise awareness, and get more Americans involved in the hunger crisis.

Business Model

Seeking efficiency in feeding folks

The SAP Mobile Platform deployed by Feeding America demonstrates an innovative approach to making the food collection and distribution process more efficient. It can be adopted by charitable food distribution organizations across the globe.


The demand within charitable food distribution organizations to implement mobile platforms is currently very high. That’s because distribution centers see immediate benefits from utilizing mobile platforms that improve their operations, by giving them enhanced process efficiencies that reduce the staff requirements for manually keying in product information. Personnel resources can then be utilized for other needs where they can directly serve people in need.


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Rescuing food from being wasted, and feeding those in need.

Success Strategy

Saving dollars for greater service

Feeding America constantly aspires to feed more people. The SAP Mobile Platform helps Feeding America consistently do that. Every dollar saved means eight more meals served. Mobile technology enables Feeding America to reduce operating expenses, and the company then puts more food on more trucks, and feeds more people. The technology is critical to ensure collecting the smallest quantities of food is cost-effective and worthwhile. By utilizing the SAP Mobile Platform, the company has reduced the time and effort involved in moving food from the source to the people in need.


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Hero Drivers

The Challenge

Getting food to more people—faster

Distributing perishable food is not easy—especially for a nonprofit organization. Technology is critical to make sure food collection from grocers’ shelves is cost-effective. Truck drivers were manually filling in forms to document when items were picked up at retailers, and delivered to food banks. That information would then be manually loaded into the Feeding America back-end system for inventory management.


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Wishing they had speedier information at their fingertips

Enter SAP

Spending time feeding people, not systems

The SAP Mobile Platform offered Feeding America the opportunity to eliminate manual data-entry, which allowed the organization to reduce the time and effort involved in moving food to people. Truck drivers could capture item information electronically on mobile devices that would then feed it into the backend system. This streamlined process would result not only in more efficient inventory management and route planning, but also reduced administrative work.


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Simple implementation

The staff will have more time for face-to-face service to people in need.

Better Business

SAP mobile platform is the big difference

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Eliminating manual data entry

Mobile technology leads to significantly reduced operating expenses. The organization can thus put more trucks on the road, and deliver more food, so fewer people go hungry.


Increasing the numbers of food pickups and deliveries

The most important benefit that food distribution organizations gain from a technology like the SAP Mobile Platform is the ability to leverage the technology to put more trucks on the road and help more people in need by picking up more food, and delivering food more quickly. Improved efficiencies through the technology allow organizations to increase the amount of food they deliver.


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Serving communities ravaged by hard economic times

Run Simple

Saving money means feeding more Americans

For every food distribution organization, more meals can be served to more people for every additional dollar that is donated. This also translates to benefits on the cost side—for every dollar saved in system administration and operating expenses also allows food organizations to feed more people.


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Revolutionizing the way we rescue food

Journey Ahead

Hunger – a sad reality, even in America

Despite significant advances in agriculture and food production in the last century, fighting hunger remains a challenge. Even in developed countries, limited access to food by the poor remains one of society’s most troubling problems.


In the United States, more than one out of five children lives in a household with food insecurity, which means they do not always know where they will find their next meal. According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), 16.7 million children under 18 in the United States live in this condition—unable to consistently access nutritious and adequate amounts of food necessary for a healthy life. In 2010, the top five states with the highest rate of food insecure children under 18 are the District of Columbia, Oregon, Arizona, New Mexico, & Florida. Twenty percent or more of the child population in 36 states and D.C. lived in food insecure households in 2010.


This is a major problem for society because a critical component to a healthy life is nutrition. From birth, the intake of vital nutrients is essential to the growth and development of a healthy individual. Good nutrition, particularly in the first three years of life, is important in establishing and maintaining a good foundation that has implications on a child’s future physical and mental health, academic achievement, and economic productivity. Unfortunately, food insecurity is an obstacle that threatens that critical foundation.


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Striving to feed all in need

The SAP Mobile Platform solution is helping Feeding America address this challenge. The technology is expected to bring the organization closer to the goal of growing their food distribution channel to five billion pounds over the coming years and feeding all 49 million Americans in need.

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