DoorDash is Using Its Technology to Give Back to the Needy

DoorDash is Using Its Technology to Give Back to the Needy

By law, restaurant owners cannot serve leftover food to guests the following day. So, what is a chef or restaurateur to do with all the extra food?

You could always have employees take some home, but what if you still have more after that?

According to “Fast Company,” “An average restaurant might waste 100,000 pounds of foods a year.”

Enter DoorDash. This food delivery company is using its algorithm to help restaurant owners with a surplus of food finding a person to deliver it to the nearest shelter caring for hungry homeless people, for example.

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What Your Restaurant Can Do To Generate Revenue During Thanksgiving

What Your Restaurant Can Do To Generate Revenue During Thanksgiving

Each individual has their own personal explanation of what Thanksgiving means to them. The general, modern celebration of Thanksgiving however, is characterized as an opportunity to enjoy quality time with friends, family, food, the occasional beverage, large parades, and yes, often the game of football.  

It’s also a time to reflect, set aside political and corporate related agendas and turn a blind eye to the negative news surrounding us from around the world. Smiles, laughter, and memorable experiences are often shared over the course of the long weekend.

With so much focus around food, drink, and togetherness; what does all of this mean for restaurants on Thanksgiving?

Well, restaurants aim for a similar experience each and every day— offering food, beverage, smiles, laughter, and memorable moments with friends, co-workers, family, and loved ones.

Depending on the restaurant concept and its location, there likely lies a large opportunity to generate awareness, increase revenue, develop repeat customers, or hopefully, a combination of the three.

Here are six elements to consider for your restaurant around Thanksgiving:

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7 Ways You Can Increase Your Brand's Social Responsibility

Giving back to the communities we serve is not a mandated practice, but is rather something extra that restaurants, and businesses alike, can do to improve their local and national communities.

School Supply Drive! Check out our bio for more info!! #tr19

A post shared by Taproom On 19th (@taproomon19th) on

This is also known as— social responsibility.

This practice can not only increase employee engagement, but also:

  • Develop a positive perception of your brand
  • Increase revenue opportunities; and
  • Increase the possibility of local media coverage

What restaurant wouldn’t want that?

According to the National Restaurant Association, over 90% of restaurants in the U.S. make some form of charitable contribution each year.

What more can be done, you ask?

Let’s take a look!

It can be as simple as what the Taproom on 19th does in Philadelphia. The gastropub in partnership with its neighborhood association, gives out free beer to anyone who donates school supplies and winter coats.   

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It can involve a more hands-on approach, like what Joey Restaurants is doing with their Cup of Care program, where their front of house, back of house, and head office leaders volunteer their time to wash, peel, and chop over vegetables for beef and barley soup "To date, JOEY has served 100,000 hot meals across Canada, Seattle and Los Angeles partnering with local shelters and organizations" chosen by their employees in each of their communities.

Or, it can involve improving and educating your own team, like Chick-fil-A has done since 1973 with their scholarship program. This brand has been helping restaurant team members achieve their dreams of higher education. Since then, nearly 36,000 team members have received scholarships from the company, “bringing the total amount to nearly $36 million applied at more than 3,000 schools nationwide” as stated in a 2016 blog post on Chick-fil-A’s The Chicken Wire.

Below are a few items to consider when either starting or revamping your own social responsibility program to deliver a more memorable impact!

1. Make it Your Mission

Part of your vision, should be improving your community. How will you turn your vision into a promise? Your program should be highlighted in your mission statement, so it can be shared with your team and community. Take it a step further and set up SMART goals for your program to hold a level of accountability. How much time and/or financial resources do you want to work towards and give back each quarter or year?

2. Reflecting On Your Values

Hopefully you’ve taken the time to define your importance, worth and usefulness within your restaurants statements. If you’ve hired and built your team based on both values and experience, your team should have a common goal of wanting to give back. Get them involved in your social program and have them open up about causes they really care about, as well.

plants growing on coins

3. Environmental Impact

Is there a way your restaurant can build on sustainability? What energy efficient measures can you put in place at your venue(s) and how can you source more ethical food and beverage products to reduce your environmental footprint?  You can also help the environment out by donating used equipment to nonprofits when it’s time to upgrade (instead of disposing them at your local landfill). What kind of impact do you want your brand to leave behind?

4. Local Events

Restaurants pose an easy and enormous opportunity to sponsor local events or teams, or by donating a percentage of revenues to a local benefit event or organization. With a large seating area, a restaurant can also host a fundraising day or night at the restaurant itself. Restaurateurs can also look to support local military and first responders with dining discounts or donations to their equally important charity programs.

5. Team Building

Your restaurant could also take the approach to improve the long-term wellbeing of your team, through a scholarship or further-education program. This could be additional culinary, management, or mixology education scholarships for example, that will improve your operations, both now and in the future. Speaking of team building, giving back often leads to a more positive work environment and increase in staff retention, plus an increase in creativity and personal growth while promoting individual philanthropy.

disaster relief

6. Disaster Relief

When disaster strikes, restaurants are often in a position to lend a helping hand, either locally, nationally, or globally. Whether it is a tornado, earthquake, hurricane, or other life altering event, restaurants can become hubs for financial donations in addition to ‘match funding’ programs.

7. Poverty Assistance

This is an unfortunate aspect of nearly every community. Restaurants are given the opportunity to help the less fortunate through a variety of methods, including volunteer participation, hosting a neighborhood cookout, or by hosting food drives benefiting the local food bank, just to name a few.

As much as a restaurant brands should be taking part in social responsibility for the sole betterment of their community, you should want your program to also improve your image, increase media coverage, develop engagement, and attract investors. Make sure your program is visible on your website, within the four walls of your establishment, and throughout your social media channels to maximize its reach and potential.

Make it a win-win for everyone!

By Doug Radkey, Industry Expert

Jersey Mike's 'Day of Giving': 100 Percent of Sales Donated to Charity

Want to sandwich in some kindness this coming March? Just buy a sub.

Jersey Mike's Subs is kicking off its seventh annual March "Month of Giving" fundraising campaign, the national fast casual sub chain partnering up with about 150 local charities to transform the community. All of these month-long efforts work toward the campaign's pinnacle event, "Day of Giving," on Wednesday, March 29, when Jersey Mike's will donate 100 percent of sales made that day to fund neighborhood needs.

The charities involved include hospitals, youth organizations, food banks, military and first responder assistance, mental health and disease advocacy, schools, and others. They can be found by state here.  All are welcomed to swing by a local Jersey Mike's and make a donation. Last year, the "Month of Giving" campaign raised more than $4 million, but Jersey Mike's wants to top that number this round.

“I would like to extend a personal invitation to you and your family to visit Jersey Mike’s Subs throughout the month of March, and especially on Day of Giving when 100 percent of sales — every penny — goes to help a great local cause,” Peter Cancro, Jersey Mike’s founder and CEO who started the company when he was only 17 years old, said in a release.

This brand is just generous one month a year, though. Since 2010, all locations have contributed more than $20 million in donations to local charities and have given more than 1.5 million free sub sandwiches toward those in knees. Opening in 1956 and now at 1,500 restaurants, Jersey Mike's is striving to continue that legacy and its mission to make a difference in the lives of others. Read More