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Outpost's Board of Directors will use this blog to discuss issues the board is exploring as it envisions Outpost's future. Can't make it to a meeting? Check here frequently to read what the Board is up to. Your current Outpost Board of...
Your Board

Solving the Hunger Puzzle

Board Beet
By Your Board on February 3, 2016

I’m often asked how and why I decided to become a professional hunger fighter. The answer is pretty simple. I had the opportunity to learn about hunger – and its more clinical term, food insecurity, which describes the inability to consistently access an adequate, nutritious diet – and our food system at a previous job. The more I learned, the more it became clear to me that its solutions were – and remain – absolutely within our reach.

The problem of hunger is not a food production problem as many might think. We have all of the food and resources to ensure that everybody in Wisconsin – and the United States – has access to an adequate, nutritious diet. It’s a problem of distribution, where people who are food insecure do not have consistent and adequate access to the food, jobs, markets, resources and the social safety nets that will help them attain enough food for a healthy life.

Hunger and food insecurity are solvable problems and once I knew this, I had to do something about it. Not to act would be irresponsible.

While completely solvable, the problem of hunger is a big and complex puzzle, requiring a lot of people and organizations working together and doing their part to put the pieces together.

Here in Milwaukee – and throughout Wisconsin – there are many great organizations working on this issue, including food banks, food pantries, and other anti-poverty organizations (full disclosure, I work for Feeding Wisconsin, which is our state’s association of Feeding America food banks).

In addition to our community partnership with Hunger Task Force, where you can buy a bag for families during the holidays or donate at our stores throughout the year, Outpost has also stepped up in other ways to solve the hunger puzzle.

The recently opened Outpost market at the Wellness Commons at 16th and North is a great example of how we are working on food access. In addition, we also launched the Co-op Basics and In Reach programs earlier this year. The Co-op Basics program offers lower prices on basic basket items in our stores to ensure that all shoppers get the most value from their food dollars they invest in us and the In Reach program gives more people the ability to join and enjoy the benefits of co-op ownership by offering a reduced payment plan for co-op shares.

As a board member, who is also a professional hunger fighter, it has been a very exciting year at Outpost as we deepened our work on food access in very meaningful ways. If you are interested in learning more about food insecurity in Milwaukee and Wisconsin, and how Outpost is working to address these issues, please join me at the Owner Meet and Greet at the Capitol Drive location on February 25 at 6 pm.


David Lee

Board President



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