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Save The Food San Diego

Save The Food San Diego is a county-wide food waste awareness partnership that leverages the national "Save The Food" public service campaign, a partnership between NRDC and the Ad Council.    Contact: Barbara Hamilton    barbara@sdfsa.org


This initiative is supported by an anonymous donor fund via The San Diego Foundation. The San Diego Foundation improves the quality of life in all of our communities by providing leadership for effective philanthropy that builds enduring assets and by promoting community solutions through research, convenings and actions that advance the common good.


Resources for Participating Organizations

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Case Studies

Case Study Template – Save The Food San Diego Case study & best practice updates here, and during in-person and webinar presentations. 


Liability Protection

Under the Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Food Donation Act, as long as the donor has not acted with negligence or intentional misconduct, the company is not liable for damage incurred as the result of illness.

The U.S. Federal Food Donation Act of 2008 specifies procurement contract language encouraging Federal agencies and contractors of Federal agencies to donate excess wholesome food to eligible nonprofit organizations to feed food-insecure people in the United States.


Food Waste Survey

Share the continuous Campaign Survey I with stakeholders



Tax Incentives

Internal Revenue Code 170(e)(3) provides enhanced tax deductions to businesses to encourage donations of fit and wholesome food to qualified nonprofit organizations serving the poor and needy.  Qualified business taxpayers can deduct the cost to produce the food and half the difference between the cost and full fair market value of the donated food.

Why Save The Food San Diego now?

In San Diego County 500,000 people live in poverty; at the same time about 500,000 tons of food is wasted every year. Across the United States 40% of food is wasted. This translates to $162 billion lost in wasted water, energy, fertilizers, cropland, and production costs (ReFed 2016). 

Food waste is a national issue which affects San Diego County in a distinct manner. Recent California legislation, AB 1826 and SB 1383, require progressively less food waste to landfill and increased donation of wholesome, edible food from businesses and from residents. 

Although planning efforts are underway, in San Diego County there are not yet robust systems in place to compost or digest food waste. This creates a timely and unique opportunity to work on source reduction and donation as priority first steps before new infrastructure and systems are realized---which is a preferred strategy that addresses highest and best use of materials, waste reduction, economic development, and hunger in our communities.

Additional Resources