Brookshire Grocery Company launched its Community Kitchen food trailer in 2020 to help provide emergency relief when needed in the communities it serves. Damaging storms in June 2023 left more than 300,000 people in the region without power, some for days, including more than 3,000 of BGC's employee-partners. This was during a massive heat wave, with temperatures and heat indexes in the triple digits. Forty-five of the company’s 206 stores were also without power. BGC quickly deployed its Community Kitchen and tractor-trailers of ice to provide free meals and bagged ice for affected residents.
BGC’s Community Kitchen served more than 2,600 free hot meals to residents in two communities with severe storm damage in mid-June. The company also donated and distributed 14 tractor-trailers of bagged ice in a dozen communities in Texas, Louisiana, and Oklahoma. Employee-partners from the corporate offices, including members of the Executive Leadership team, as well as from other stores, voluntarily helped restock affected stores and distribute free bags of ice. June marked the third time BGC had deployed its Community Kitchen for storm relief since November. Its staff also served 3,000 free hot meals after tornadoes in four Texas and Louisiana communities in November and December. The Community Kitchen is also involved in outreach and engagement activities, having provided more than 3,100 meals at Juneteenth, law enforcement and veterans' events since November.
Since 1928, BGC has made a priority of providing exceptional service in its retail stores and in the communities it serves. Service and doing the right thing are a part of the company’s core values. Pillar causes include hunger relief, family health and well-being, and honoring first responders. The Community Kitchen helps support each of these areas and more. BGC operates in 165 communities in Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas and Oklahoma. When severe storms, tornadoes or hurricanes occur, it is important to the company to be able to provide relief for residents, emergency first responders and utility workers, and to help communities recover. The company also uses the Community Kitchen for outreach efforts, such as recently serving more than 3,100 free meals at Juneteenth, law enforcement and veterans’ events. The Community Kitchen is also used to provide appreciation meals for employees and supplier-partners.
The Community Kitchen food trailer was dispatched for the first time in September 2020, along with 27 truckloads of free ice and bottled water, in response to Hurricane Laura. Weeks later, BGC served 3,500 free meals in six communities after Hurricane Delta. After the historic winter storm in early 2021, BGC used the Community Kitchen to provide appreciation meals for local hospital workers. The Community Kitchen also fed residents after Hurricane Ida in August 2021 and distributed free water and ice in six South Louisiana communities. This is in addition to partnering with customers and others to donate to relief efforts such as $55,000 to the American Red Cross Hurricane Ida Relief Fund.
"Brookshire Grocery Company is dedicated to giving back and to supporting our employee-partners, customers and neighbors. Our Community Kitchen has proven to be a great way for us to show our support for people and communities in good times and when they need us most," said Brad Brookshire, Chairman and CEO of Brookshire Grocery Company.
“Brookshire’s Grocery Company has demonstrated time and again their commitment to the communities their stores serve. As home to the Brookshire Grocery Arena here in Bossier, we see that commitment to our community often,” said Lisa Johnson, President/CEO, Bossier Chamber of Commerce. “During a recent long power outage for our region, Brookshire’s was there – offering free ice to those affected. The company also recently made a large food donation to the Bossier Parish Sheriff’s Office Operation Blessing food pantry. We are proud to count them as a great community supporter of Bossier City and Northwest Louisiana."