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Food Donations

Millions of pounds of food and groceries go to waste each year.

To encourage companies and organizations to donate healthy food that would otherwise go to waste, they are protected from criminal and civil liability under the Good Samaritan Food Donation Act.

The Good Samaritan Act: Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Act of 1996: P.L. 104-210 (October 1, 1996) was named in honor of the late Congressman who was a champion of efforts to expand food donations to the poor and to protect those who make donations. Good Samaritan laws are designed to encourage the donation of food and groceries to nonprofit charitable agencies. The 1996 amendments exclude from civil or criminal liability a person or nonprofit food organization that, in good faith, donates or distributes donated foods for food relief.

  • Click here for a full size version of the infographic shown left.
  • For more information on food recovery and making donations, click here.
  • For more information on food waste in the United Stats, click here.
If you are in need of assistance, find a nearby food pantry or meal program near you