AUGUSTA, MAINE May 23, 2018 Employees of Central Maine Power, a subsidiary of AVANGRID Inc., a diversified energy company, along with staff from Good Shepherd took part in a ground breaking today, as the Avangrid Foundation announced a $100,000 grant to support the Food Bank's new distribution center. The gift will go towards construction of a cold storage facility at the new center in Hampden. Avangrid Foundation, an independent organization that funds philanthropic investments in areas where AVANGRID Inc. and its subsidiaries operate, will help the Good Shepherd Food Bank meet its goal to distribute an additional 10 million meals annually to families struggling with food insecurity.
Once construction is complete, the renovated distribution center will enable the Food Bank to distribute those meals including nearly 3.5 million pounds of produce, protein and other perishable goods.
"We are greatly appreciative of this generous gift from Avangrid Foundation and Central Maine Power in support of our mission," says Kristen Miale, president of Good Shepherd Food Bank. "Maine suffers the seventh-highest rate of food insecurity in the nation, and the highest in New England. As a central component of our 10-year strategic plan to eradicate hunger in Maine, this facility will have a transformative effect on increasing access to healthy food for the people we serve."
The new distribution center, formerly a Bangor Daily News printing facility, allows retrofitting of more than 300,000 cu. ft. for Food Bank operations. The facility will feature three state-of-the-art temperature and humidity controlled zones for cold storage of produce, as well as a 100,000 cu. ft. freezer for storing fish and other local products. The center's enhanced cold storage will allow year-round distribution of perishable foods, and provide vital access to healthy fruits and vegetables for the needy families in central, northern, and eastern Maine.
"Our state is ranked 7th in the nation for food insecurity which means several Mainers are forced to choose between food or utilities. No one should have to make these types of choices," said Doug Herling, president and CEO of Central Maine Power CMP, our parent company AVANGRID and the Avangrid Foundation are grateful to play a small part in supporting the Good Shepherd Food Bank, a very impactful organization in our community that is making big strides in the battle against hunger."
Construction is expected to last 12 months, with the facility's anticipated opening in summer of 2019.
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Celebrating the groundbreaking of Good Shepherd Food Bank's new distribution center in Hampden (left to right): Kristen Miale, president, Good Shepherd Food Bank; Erin Fogg, director of Development, Good Shepherd Food Bank; Nicole Licata Grant, director, Avangrid Foundation; Joel Harrington, manager, Community and Government Relations, Central Maine Power; Gail Rice, Corporate Communications, AVANGRID; Mary Brayhall, Avangrid Foundation; and John Gaudet Jr., Central Maine Power.