PetSmart’s ‘Buy a Bag, Give a Meal’ program generates more than 63 million meals

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(Photo: Business Wire)

(BUSINESS WIRE) — PetSmart announced that it has wrapped up its Buy a Bag, Give a Meal program where the retailer donated a meal to a pet in need for every bag of dog or cat food purchased between March 1 – Dec. 31, 2017. The program beat its goal of 60 million meals* with more than 63 million meals generated. The Buy a Bag, Give a Meal program is the largest philanthropic initiative in PetSmart’s 30-year history and is among the largest pet food donation efforts the industry has seen.

“We are so pleased that, together with our shoppers who bought dog and cat food bags at our stores and, we’ve not only met, but exceeded our goal of donating 60 million meals,” said Joshua Kanter, PetSmart’s executive vice president of marketing and customer experience. “To date we’ve distributed about 35 million meals to help feed hungry pets in need, and we expect to deliver the remaining 29 million to pet shelters and rescues, as well human food banks, pantries and meal programs across the U.S. and Canada in the first half of 2018.”

The delivery of such a large-scale volume of donated food presented significant logistical challenges for PetSmart. In collaboration with nonprofit partner, PetSmart Charities, who is teaming up with nonprofits’s Rescue Bank and Feeding America®, the donated pet food has been, and will continue to be, efficiently distributed to thousands of destinations to help feed hungry pets in need across the U.S. and Canada.

Pet food is a rare offering at food banks and pantries, and pet families in need often feed scarce human food to their pets. A unique aspect of the program is that it provides pet food to human food banks, pantries and meal programs so that families in need can secure food for every member of the family, including their dogs and cats.

To date, PetSmart and its partners have delivered 35 million meals – about 3,684 tons – of pet food via 188 semi trucks to pets in need across the U.S. and Canada. The remaining more than 3,000 tons of pet food will be delivered in 2018 totaling more than 63 million meals, nearly 6,800 tons, across about 340 truckloads.

As a point of reference, using a standard six-inch pet food bowl, more than 63 million meals lined up beside each other would span from New York City to Los Angeles and back again – covering 6,000 miles. The nearly 6,800 tons of pet food is about the same weight as 959 elephants and could fill 2.5 Olympic-sized pools.

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