VIDEO: We Teamed Up With Terrell Owens to Feed America at the L.A. Regional Food Bank

November 26, 2015
by Dana Poblete for Thrive Market

The temperature hovers somewhere around 40 degrees Fahrenheit, but we’re not phased. In the frigid sorting warehouse of the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank, over a dozen of us Thrivers, the food bank’s faithful employees—oh, and a living NFL legend named Terrell Owens—are on a mission.

We’ve all teamed up to help feed as many hungry people in Los Angeles as we can. Our inspiration? Thrive Market’s newest ally: Feeding America.

In our home city of Los Angeles, one in six people are food insecure, including one in four children—that’s 1.6 million hungry people, 400,000 of whom are kids, according to Andy Morris, the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank’s Director of Marketing and Communications. A huge division of the Feeding America network, this food bank is one of the largest of its kind in the nation. Since being established in 1973, it has distributed over one billion pounds of food total, to 280,500 people each month.

This is an effort that definitely hits home for us and our partner Terrell Owens, aka T.O. (In case you didn’t know, he’s an acclaimed former NFL wide receiver with the most rousing endzone dances we’ve ever seen.) “I grew up in a Section 8 community,” says T.O. "I knew what it was like to not have the best of everything, to be on welfare, so to speak." After escaping a childhood on food stamps and rising up to NFL greatness, he’s all too familiar with the obstacles food insecure families face, but he also knows it’s not hopeless. “I’m here today to bridge that gap,” he says. Press play to hear more of T.O.'s story.

We never would have imagined we’d be picking good onions from bad ones and packing up boxes of produce with a future NFL Hall of Famer. But yep, it happened! In just a few hours, we sorted and packed 11,000 pounds (that's 5.5 tons!) of squash, cauliflower, broccoli, onions, breads, meats, milk, eggs, canned goods, and more, adding up to 9,130 meals. Sure, we merely made a dent in the tireless work the L.A. Food Bank’s amazing team do all year long, but we gave it our best and managed to empty the warehouse. (In fact, we finished early. “Y’all just work too hard and fast,” joked the food bank’s production coordinator, Greg.)

We’re serious when it comes to feeding as many hungry individuals and families as possible. This isn't just our mission on this particular day, but what we strive to do all day, every day. That’s why we’ve partnered with Feeding America to not only provide free Thrive Gives memberships to hundreds of thousands of its food bank clients and volunteers, but also to donate funds for these members to spend on healthy, wholesome food.

From November 1 and all the way through December, Thrive Market customers can choose to donate a portion of their savings to Feeding America. Motivational speaker Tony Robbins will match every donation dollar for dollar, in a commitment to raise at least $200,000 all together.

Join us in the movement for healthy food for all—for every person who nabs a Thrive membership, we donate a Thrive Gives membership to individuals or families in need, granting them access not only to wholesome food at wholesale prices, but educational content that can help anyone learn how to navigate how to live a healthy life.

But it doesn’t stop with us. Get involved with Feeding America by donating money or food, or signing up to volunteer at your local food bank. It’s easy, and we can attest: It’s really, really fun.

Photo credit: Alicia Cho 


We believe that everyone deserves the right to access healthy food. But even in the United States, it can prove impossible for some families. So we created Thrive Gives: a program that gives access, family by family, to affordable, healthy, and wholesome food. Click here to see if you qualify for a free Thrive Gives membership!

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