Austin-Bergstrom International Airport has partnered with concessionaries and Keep Austin Fed to donate unsold, packaged food to the community and prevent it from ending up in a landfill

The Food Rescue Program started in March and in its first month collected more than 3,500 unsold food products to donate. The unsold food products collected for the program include sandwiches, salads, snack boxes and buns.

“We are so thrilled when organizations like ABIA join our fight to reduce the 40 percent of food wasted in America by redistributing their wholesome surplus food to some of the approximately 180,000 people in Austin who don't know where their next meal will come from,” said Keep Austin Fed Program Director Lisa Barden in a prepared statement.

“While working on the composting and recycling initiatives, we realized there was a perfect opportunity to implement a food rescue program,” said B.J. Carpenter, Sustainability Program Coordinator at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. “As part of our overall waste program and sustainability goals, we look for new ways to reduce waste and keep things out of the landfill.”

Paradies Lagardere donated a refrigerator to store donated food in the Barbara Jordan Terminal, and Keep Austin Fed collects the food on weekdays. The donations are then taken to Foundation Communities like Skyline Terrace, Arbor Terrace and Bluebonnet Studios, which provide families with affordable housing. The airport added donations also go to the Rebekah Baines Johnson Center, which provides affordable housing to the elderly in Austin.

“We’re proud and excited to be part of the ABIA community that puts so much effort into giving back through our daily concessions operations inside the airport,” said Jennifer Watson, General Manager of Food and Beverage at Paradies Lagardere ABIA. “Taking only a few moments out of our daily routine, we’re able to provide much needed meals and food products to very worthy local groups that assist in providing meals to Austin area residents in need.”

“We are honored to help with this great cause,” said Terry Mahlum, Regional Vice President at Delaware North. “With our made today and gone today sandwiches, this program allows us to donate these sandwiches to a great local group. Delaware North is committed to this city.”

TAP HERE for more information about Keep Austin Fed.