Fate of tech leftovers as varied as firms that feed their staffs
Google, Tesla, Uber donate; Facebook cites safety worries
Many large tech companies, except Facebook, donate excess food to different organizations around the Bay Area.
Most everyone knows about the abundance of free food at tech companies — a perk popularized by Google and others to attract talented workers with dining choices that make it unnecessary to leave campus.
From the South Bay to the Peninsula to San Francisco, these companies employ hundreds of thousands of employees in the Bay Area. That’s a lot of food and not all of it is consumed every day. What happens to what’s left over at the end of each day?
Many of the companies donate their excess food, often through the outside caterers they use. Google, for example, donated nearly 60,000 pounds of food from January through October, spread out through different organizations.
But Facebook, among the biggest and most high-profile of Silicon Valley tech giants that gives its employees free food, does not donate its excess uneaten food.
Facebook cites health and liability concerns as reasons it does not donate excess food from the 21 cafes and five food trucks on its massive campus in Menlo Park, from where employees and their guests frequently post on social media photos of the meals they eat for free.
Julia Beal is a former chef at one of Facebook’s many eateries.
“I always felt they could use a kick in the butt regarding food waste but also understand there are health code restrictions/guidelines that are required to be followed, which I’m certain could be possible,” Beal said. The raw-food chef said she was “fortunate” to work in the Living the Dream Cafe at Facebook in 2016 before moving to Indiana.
“We are unable to donate our leftovers because of concerns around contamination and allergies,” said Anthony Harrison, Facebook spokesman, on Friday. He said the company, which feeds 25,000 workers The ranking compared 182 cities on 32 different metrics, including job security, non-mortgage debt and the share of households with emergency savings.