Sodexho calls on university to bust national food drive record

Adrian Northrup

In the past, Sodexho, as well as many other offices and organizations around the UW-Eau Claire campus, have conducted food drives. But this week, the on-campus food provider will attempt an all-time first.

On Wednesday, all of Sodexho’s 400 college and campus locations will participate in Cans Across America, a nationwide effort of the Sodexho Foundation to break the world record for the largest food drive by a non-charitable organization in a 24-hour period.

“It’s the first time we’re trying to do (a food drive) with all campus locations,” said Gary Prellwitz, director of Eau Claire’s Blugold Dining program. “We’re hoping to create some excitement and impact by breaking a world record.”

All Sodexho-owned locations on campus will participate in the event, Prellwitz said, adding that Blugold Dining will also provide on-site canned goods that students, faculty, staff and community members can purchase and then donate.

If each campus location can collect 500 pounds, the company will reach its goal, Prellwitz said.

“We’re a bigger university, so I’m hoping we’ll do much better than that,” he said, explaining that he hopes to collect 700 pounds at Eau Claire.

Senior Amy Papenfuss said she thinks linking a food drive with a goal to break a world record is a good idea.

“It’s for a good cause,” she said. “I guess the world record (aspect) kind of gets more people into it, which is good, and it gets more food.”

At the end of the day, a representative of Feed My People food bank, 331 Putnam St., will help verify the count and weigh the donations and deliver them to the Feed My People food bank.

The world record of 156,889 pounds is held by the Thunder Outreach program of Bechtelsville, Pa. for its Thunder in the Valley 2005 food drive.

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