NAR-Food Recovery Network (FRN) Partnership FAQ

The National Association of REALTORS® and the Food Recovery Network recently announced their partnership to help combat hunger across America. NAR is offering answers to some of the program’s Frequently Asked Questions.

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What specifically is NAR pledging regarding food recovery? And what is it asking its state and local associations?

  • NAR – in partnering with the Food Recovery Network (FRN) – is pledging to donate unserved meals from its events to the most vulnerable members of society.
  • NAR is asking state and local association executives and its presidents to join in this effort by making a pledge to participate in this food recovery effort to donate unserved meals at their events in their local community.
  • As an example, surplus food from this year’s Leadership Summit is being donated to Fight2Feed, a local and volunteer-run organization on a mission to end hunger and food waste in the Chicago area.
  • In the past – and at countless similar events held in all industries across the country – surplus food had typically ended up in a landfill. 

How can state and local associations participate in this NAR and Food Recovery Network program?

  • To participate in the program please schedule a time to speak directly with a Food Recovery Network team member to discuss the specifics of food recovery at your event.
  • The goal of this call is to share more information about starting a food recovery program, what it means to be Food Recovery Verified, and to determine the ways FRN can support you in your efforts.
  • The majority of Food Recovery Verified events are conferences and gatherings with at least 200 expected attendees. The Food Recovery Network does not have a minimum requirement for food recovery but when they partner with various local organizations that receive the donations, they adhere to the organizations’ minimum requirements. Having a conversation with a Food Recovery Network team member is the first step to discuss any questions about event size.

How will state and local associations be supported by NAR as they work to make a similar pledge?

  • NAR will assume all per event administrative costs for the program through the remainder of this year. 
  • Participation in this food recovery effort will count as toward your association’s Core Standards Consumer Outreach requirement.
  • A year from now, NAR will reflect back on the impact throughout the various communities its local and state affiliates serve.
  • REALTORS® have a long history of giving back to the community. NAR hopes that through this effort, it will inspire other associations, organizations, and businesses to fight hunger in their local communities.

How was the Food Recovery Network founded, and how successful has it been so far?

  • The Food Recovery Network is the largest student movement fighting food waste and hunger in America.
  • It was born from an idea of four students at the University of Maryland in 2011, when they noticed how much dining hall food was ending up in the trash at the end of the night.
  • By the end of that same school year, FRN at UMD had recovered 30,000 meals to DC-area hunger-fighting nonprofits.
  • By the 2012 spring semester, a second FRN chapter had been founded at Brown University.
  • Since then, the program has swept across the nation and made higher education the first sector where food recovery is the norm and not the exception.
  • A total of 230 Chapters have been founded since 2011 – a group which has collectively donated 3.9 million pounds of food from 3.2 million meals.
  • These efforts have prevented an estimated 9.4 million pounds of C02 emissions.