From crisis comes opportunity, goes the adage. In the case of the COVID-19 pandemic sweeping the nation in the last year, it has offered healthcare facilities a chance to revisit and rethink nearly every area of operations, including the role of food service in their organizations and their communities.
More organizations are seeking a path to healthier, more resilient, more equitable communities. As a workable answer to food and job insecurity and a way to build resilience in the community, FoodService Partners’ Union City Food Culinary Center opened recently to produce 50,000 meals per day to local hospitals and more, according to Food Management.
Part meal production and distribution center and part food hub and business incubator, the center’s high-capacity operation has created 150 living-wage jobs in San Francisco’s East Bay. Kaiser Permanente, one of several health systems participating in the collaboration, has played a major role in the development of the center. Healthcare foodservice and its purchasing power is a key piece. And not just that: Healthcare systems are getting increasingly into preventing disease and health issues by addressing social determinants of health. Not surprisingly, access to healthy food looms large in this equation.
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