Guide to Working with Restaurants and Grocery Stores for Meals

The COVID-19 public health crisis is disrupting the ways in which businesses traditionally operate. Crises such as these open new avenues for community-based organizations to establish new
partnerships, rekindle lapsed relationships and leverage a negative situation into an opportunity. Senior nutrition programs are uniquely positioned to adapt, ideate, and succeed in engaging
traditional and untraditional partners to meet the evolving nutrition needs of the older adults that they serve. As many school districts and restaurants are shut down or operating at reduced
capacity, thousands of pounds of perishable foods are available to be turned into meals for senior nutrition program participants.

Since 2017, the Administration for Community Living has funded a cadre of senior nutrition programs across the country to develop and field inventive solutions to key business challenges for
senior nutrition programs. Two recipients of the Innovations in Nutrition Programs and Services Grants from ACL were invited to share learnings from their funded projects that involved local restaurants and grocery stores. This document provides a step by step guide for senior nutrition programs seeking to work with food retailers (restaurants and grocery stores – for meals) during the COVID-19 public health emergency.