Dr. Richard Pan & Coalition Announce Plans to Use Food Trucks and Delivery Tracking Software to Deliver a Million Summer Meals in 2019

Coalition includes Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg, the No Kid Hungry Campaign, United Way, the Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District, local school districts and Sacramento Public libraries

March 1, 2019

SACRAMENTO – Along with a broad collation of schools, organizations and local leaders, Dr. Richard Pan, a pediatrician and state senator from the Sacramento region announced today that Sacramento will be the first county in the state to pilot software that will help feed more summer meals to kids and we will enlist the help of food trucks to help reach goal of delivering a million meals to kids this summer.

“The Sacramento region gained national attention as the Farm to Fork capital of the country, but we are working to be the Farm to Every Fork capitol,” said Dr. Richard Pan.  “Collaborating with community partners, we saw a 20 percent increase in meals served over the last two years and we are working hard to reach more hungry kids this year.”

“Sacramento is the farm-to-fork capital with farm fresh food right at our fingertips. Our region has access to millions of USDA federal dollars to contribute to feeding hungry children. All of our children deserve access to healthy meals every day of the year. Senator Richard Pan’s ‘Million Meal Summer Initiative’ will use community partners to make sure no child goes hungry,” said Congresswoman Doris Matsui.

“This event is about more than free lunch from a cool zero-emission food truck. If we want to build a healthy society, we need to make sure every child has access to healthy food and clean air,” said Sacramento vice-mayor Eric Guerra.

Dr. Richard Pan announced new partnerships and improvements to the Million Meals Summer campaign, including:

  • Sacramento has been chosen as one of two counties in the state to be part of a $280,000 grant from the Center of Eco Literacy.
  • Thanks to a partnership with Goldstar Foods/Colyar Technology Solutions, Sacramento will be the first county in the state to pilot online tracking of meal delivery. This will not only lead to a reduction in food waste and greenhouse gas emissions, it will allow organizations to adjust their programs, get reimbursed quicker and relieve administrative burdens.
  • Natomas and Elk Grove School Districts have been awarded $110,000 by the national organization, No Kid Hungry for food trucks to deliver meals to kids.
  • The Metropolitan Air Quality District is funding an electric food truck— the first in the country built solely to serve hungry kids. 
  • Businesses are already contributing to a “buffer” fund that will help off-set financial risks for sponsoring organizations. Because organizations get reimbursed only for meals served, they lose money on unserved meals when they overestimate the number of meals needed. Groups will apply through a portal monitored by No Kid Hungry for the “buffer” fund.

Historically in Sacramento, only 12 percent of eligible kids are served summer meals while one in four go to sleep hungry each night.  In 2015, Sacramento left $3 million federal dollars on the table because we could not figure out how to get meals to hungry kids.

Over the last several years, Dr. Pan has brought elected officials and community groups together to launch an ambitious project of expanding the Summer Food Service Program, with the goal of feeding one million meals to children in the Sacramento area in the summer months. The group is continuing to innovate the program to reach more and more hungry kids.