Our goal is to create a “food lifeline” and “food safety-net” throughout the country.
To support those goals we are improving our services and the value we provide.
We are working on a variety of initiatives to make food banks more accessible.
In 2012 we introduced a QR code donation management system for food banks. In 2020, we began storing all necessary data and information for donors and agencies in the Cloud.
Highly Specialized Staff
Every member of the food bank team and manager of the kitchen and pantry have been certified Food Safety and Handling qualified. In addition, the kitchen manager is a registered dietitian. We aim to improve the quality of service by sharing this knowledge with other staff and volunteers.
Collaboration based on agreements
Our agreements clarify rights and responsibilities of all parties
- Donor agreement for commercial donations
- Donor agreement for emergency food donations
We handle fresh, frozen, and ambient temperature foods.
We aim to provide nutritious food.
Refrigerated and Frozen Food
We have walk-in coolers and freezers. Our system monitors the temperatures around the clock and data is stored in the Cloud. This equipment has allowed us to improve the nutritional quality of food we can accept and provide.
Fruits and Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are indispensable to improve nutritional balance. We have already received many donations, and strive to further expand our procurement network.
Logistics and Service Area
We process a significant volume of food and cover a large service area.
One of the largest volumes handled in Japan
Since 2002, we have received food donations from over 2,400 companies and organizations (October 2022).Our warehouse has 4-tier pallet racks able to store 100 pallets of food. Additional warehouse space is provided by partner logistics companies.
We also collaborate with food bank organizations who are members of the Alliance of Japan Foodbanks. These food banks operate from Hokkaido to Okinawa
We support over 400 organizations
These are welfare organizations, NPOs, faith-based groups, pantries, kids cafes, and community outreach.
Our goal is to enhance convenience for both donors and beneficiaries.
Organization Pick-up Reservation System
Organizations can select a time to pick up food to reduce their waiting time and improve our efficiency. We continue to promote the use of this system to prevent COVID19 infection.
Online Matching System
We first introduced this system in 2016. It is a closed-platform for affiliated organizations. Food donors provide information on available donations which are sent directly from the donor company. Donations can be applied for and sent anywhere in the country. We will expand the network by encouraging its use in areas other than Kanto.
Our pantry in Tokyo operates three days a week.
We hope to see an increase in the number of food banks and pantries.
It was in 2008 that we began drafting food bank guidelines in consultation with food companies and other food banks. In 2010 eleven food banks signed the “Food Bank Guidelines” which outlined basic agreements on key issues related to the handling, storing and distributing of food as well as basic principles of not selling donations. The latest guidelines can be found here (Japanese only).
We support new food pantries through seminars, provision of food products, and sharing best practices.
We officially opened marugohan market in November 2019. Members can “shop” for what they need in a comfortable atmosphere. Instead of paying with cash they give back to society with a good deed.
We offer a variety of programs for both donors and beneficiaries.
Participating corporations and organizations select the number of families they want to support. On designated days, boxes are packed and shipped to families in need. Each box contains a return postcard for the recipient family to write a message. Those messages are shared with the participating companies and organizations.
Okinawa Usagamisore Project
“Usagamisore” means “Bon Appetite” in Okinawa. The prefecture has the highest poverty rate at more than 30% (2018 data). The COVID19 pandemic has shut down all inbound tourism which the local economy had relied on. We applied the marugohan concept to Okinawa using the local phrase, “yuimaru” which means to help one and another. In November and December, 2020 we held food drives at our five distribution sites and nearly 85% of recipients brought something to donate. In December 2021 we served 10,000 households over a 6-day period.