Food Pantries Are Getting Smaller to Better Serve Communities (Watch)

Today’s food pantries are getting a makeover. In past years, communities would rely on local charity organizations and churches to collect food and other needed goods and then wait for families in need to ask for help. But there are some issues with that process.

For one, even those who have genuine needs aren’t always willing to go out of their way to ask for help. And charity organizations that serve larger communities might not always have the ability or the resources to really target their offerings to the specific needs of their communities.

So food pantries are getting smaller. Little Free Pantries, which are basically just small boxes that hold food and other needed goods, are popping up around the country. And they solve a few different problems for charity groups and those in need.

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First of all, it makes it easier for people to donate items to help others. You can simply bring your items to the Little Free Pantry in your area and drop them inside. And by that same token, those in need can more easily pick up items without having to go out of their way to ask for help.

One Advantage of a Niche Market is Better Product Targeting

But Little Free Pantries also give communities the ability to target their offerings more specifically to the needs of people nearby. For instance, people in the middle of a big city are likely to have some different needs than those who live in the suburbs or even out in rural areas. So by getting smaller and serving there geographic niche market, food pantries can more easily cater to the members of their communities. And that’s one advantage of a niche market that can potentially apply to small businesses operating in different communities as well.

Food Bank Photo via Shutterstock

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Annie Pilon Annie Pilon is a Senior Staff Writer for Small Business Trends, covering entrepreneur profiles, interviews, feature stories, community news and in-depth, expert-based guides. When she’s not writing she can be found exploring all that her home state of Michigan has to offer.

2 Reactions
  1. Really interesting. I think that they can also benefit from being in obscure places. This kinds of reminds me of the dozens of vending machines in Japan.

    • Agreed – I think they’re popping up in a variety of different places, so we’ll see if they can make even more of an impact going forward

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