If you have food to donate
Two programs collect prepared, perishable foods:
Download a food donation tracking form
Minnesota Central Kitchen
This program from Second Harvest Heartland feeds people experiencing hunger.
|If your business wants to||Take this action|
|Donate perishable food||Visit MealConnect.org|
|Volunteer your time and cooking expertise||Email Chow Girls|
|Email Chow Girls|
Donating meals for children
Restaurants can donate free meals for children.
Submit information to the Hunger Soultions map of meals for kids
Food that cannot be donated
If you have food that cannot be donated, consider using a Hennepin County organics program such as:
- Organics composting
Visit Hennepin County organics recycling for businesses
When you donate
Protection from liability
Food donors are protected by the Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Food Act.
Businesses and organizations that donate food in good faith:
- Are not liable for the condition of the food
- Must donate to a nonprofit for distribution to needy individuals.
Save money on your taxes
The federal tax code allows a deduction for donated food.
Read about federal tax deduction for food donations
Help your community and the environment
Donating surplus prepared food helps local hunger-relief agencies serve those in need.
In the U.S., as much as 40% of food produced for people to eat is wasted along the food chain.
Read about organics donations and recycling in Hennepin County
Safely donating food
View tips to keep the food you donate safe
The Minnesota Food Code applies to all donated food.
Donated prepared foods and potentially hazardous foods must meet certain requirements:
|Type of food||Temperature requirements|
|Cold food||Must be maintained at 41 degrees Fahrenheit or below|
|Hot food||Must be maintained at 135 degrees Fahrenheit or above|
|Cooling hot food||
Examples of potentially hazardous foods:
- Cut tomatoes or melons
- Dairy products
- Most cooked food
- Cut leafy greens
Labeling requirements depend on whether the food:
- Is in its original package
- Has been prepared as a meal
Donated commercially prepackaged food labels must show:
- Name of the item or food
- Manufacturer information
- List of ingredients
- Use-by date, if included
- The following statement: “Donated Food-Not for Resale.”
Label donated food on the outside of the container with:
- Food name
- Food donor
- Preparation date
Lasagna prepared 1/12/17
From ABC Restaurant
123 Food Street
Each individual item does not need to be labeled.
Delivering and receiving food
Send donated food with a log sheet with times and temperature of the food when it left the donating business.
When received, the food temperature should be:
- 41ºF or below for cold items
- 140ºF or above for hot items
Completely fill out the log sheet and keep the log sheet with the food.
Organizations receiving food should keep log sheets for three months.
Serve food immediately if it:
- Is at a temperature between 41ºF and 135ºF
- Has been outside of that range for two hours or less
Discard food if it has been outside of that range for more than two hours.
AddressPublic Service Building
505 Fourth Ave S, Room 520Minneapolis, MN 55415
8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Monday – Friday