In light of COVID-19 , we are at once proud of our political leadership for making the right and hard decision to shut down all dine-in restaurants in Vermont and also deeply concerned for the tens of thousands of hard-working people that lost their jobs overnight. We're also concerned for the farmers that relied on restaurants to purchase their products year-round.
As of this writing, all of The Skinny Pancake locations are currently closed. We have built up a remarkably talented team and we have a powerful commissary kitchen capable of producing huge volumes of food. Like so many folks out there, we care deeply about our community and we want to help with all of our might. We are not here to raise money for our business. We are here because we are shifting gears as a company to address the impending food insecurity within this greater crisis.
Today we launch a program called “ShiftMeals: a Local Food Response to COVID-19.” With thousands losing jobs across Vermont, and state food banks inundated with people to feed, ShiftMeals will provide food security for those in need while keeping members of our team employed. We will immediately do outreach to laid-off restaurant workers, musicians and other friends of foodservice. As needs arise, we will also be donating meals directly to local food banks and outreach centers. This week we have already donated hundreds of meals to both Feeding Chittenden and the Lamoille County Food Shelf.
Here’s how you can participate:
1. Donate. A contribution here will fund ShiftMeals directly. 100% of money raised will go to producing meals for those who need it while also keeping our team employed. In collaboration with our local food network and the Vermont Food Bank, we will be diligently using these meals to reduce food insecurity.
2. Share. Help spread the word of this work by sharing our efforts using #ShiftMeals
3. Buy. You can purchase your own shift meal and we’ll give one to someone in need. We are actively working on a ShiftMeal retail offering in the Buy 1, Give 1 model of Tom’s Shoes. Stay tuned for that to launch in the coming week.
The impact of COVID-19 threatens to harm our farming friends in the local food movement along with restaurant workers. We are deeply grateful to The Vermont Community Foundation who has approved an initial $20,000 grant for this program as Boston Beer Company who has pledged $2,500 to ShiftMeals. Working with VCF, The Intervale Center and The Vermont Food Bank, we are focused on tapping additional federal, state and philanthropic funds to provide as much food security as possible throughout this crisis. And, thanks to the remarkable local food network in VT, we have the capacity and sophistication to direct that funding towards our local farmers, to keep the money local and help farms remain viable this growing season.
As a community, we all need to do our part to reassure each other that we stand firm in our commitment to caring for one another. With ShiftMeals, we invite you to please join us in sending that message loud and clear to our local food community.
Stay safe out there friends...
-Benjy Adler and the team at The Skinny Pancake
*If interested in making a larger, tax-deductible donation or placing a corporate order of ShiftMeals, please e-mail [email redacted]
*This week's ShiftMeal Request form is now live here, please share with anyone in need ---> bit.ly/RequestaShiftMeal