Global Innovation Challenge Shines Spotlight on New Models of Food Banking to Alleviate Hunger and Poverty

The Global FoodBanking Network Partners Awarded $2 Million from Citi Foundation to Fund Innovative Solutions to a Global Food Crisis

Chicago, IL, USA, October 5, 2023 — The Global FoodBanking Network (GFN) and four of its partner food banks — ABACO Bancos de Alimentos de Colombia, Leket Israel, Red de Alimentos Chile, and Red Argentina de Bancos de Alimentos — were each awarded $500,000 to pilot new programs and technologies in an effort to increase access to, and availability of, food around the world. The funds were awarded last week as part of Citi Foundation’s Global Innovation Challenge, which provided $25 million to 50 community organizations working to improve food security and strengthen the financial health of low-income families and communities around the world.  

“We are deeply grateful to the Citi Foundation for this support of GFN and our food bank partners. This generous grant will help serve more communities, reach more people, and support innovative, community-led solutions to the very real food systems challenges the world faces today,” said Lisa Moon, president and CEO of The Global FoodBanking Network. “GFN works around the world to support newly established food banks to get food where it is needed most. These funds will enhance the ability of our food bank partners to develop new approaches that in total will help millions of people who are facing hunger worldwide.” 

These grant funds will allow GFN and its partners to start — or quickly scale — specific, locally led solutions tailored to individual communities. The goal is getting more food where it is needed, reduce food loss and waste, and ultimately create stronger, more resilient communities.  

Asociación de Bancos de Alimentos de Colombia (ABACO) seeks to improve access and availability of food in 92 indigenous communities in the La Guajira region through its Food for All program. The initiative will help establish local, community-led stores, community gardens, animal husbandry programs, and artisan markets, while also providing more traditional food distribution and education programs. 

In Argentina, the funding will support members of the Red Argentina de Bancos de Alimentos (REDBdA)’s network of food banks through its Less Waste, More Nutrition project, with the goal of increasing the volume of high nutritional value food that is recovered and distributed to a population suffering from widespread food insecurity. Thanks to this project, by the end of 2025, REDBdA food banks will distribute 21 million kilograms of food, contributing to improving the nutrition of more than 1 million people. 

Chile’s Red de AlimentosRed Virtual Directa program aims to harness new technologies to mitigate food loss and waste. Through this technology-driven food assistance program, Red de Alimentos will support the community’s most vulnerable individuals by recovering and distributing surplus food from local hotels, restaurants, and casinos and redirecting it to local vulnerable and underserved populations throughout Chile. 

Leket Israel is piloting a mobile grocery truck project to collect surplus farm produce and deliver it to remote and underserved communities in the country.  

The Global FoodBanking Network’s grant funds will help expand its Food Bank Accelerator program, which works directly with newly established food banks, providing financial resources, technical support and mentoring to help the food banks expand their reach to feed more people and provide more advanced services directly to their communities.  


About The Global FoodBanking Network 

The Global FoodBanking Network supports community-led solutions to alleviate hunger in more than 50 countries. While millions struggle to access enough safe and nutritious food, nearly a third of all food produced is lost or wasted. We’re changing that. We believe food banks directed by local leaders are key to achieving Zero Hunger and building resilient food systems. For more information, visit 

Media Contact:

Michael Oko
VP of Communications and Marketing 

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