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Zero Food Waste Coalition

Federal Food Donation Liability Protections

In January 2023, President Biden signed the Food Donation Improvement Act (FDIA) into law. The bill was passed with help from the Zero Food Waste Coalition, the Healthy Living Coalition, and a groundswell of food rescue organizations and food businesses. The FDIA updates the Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Act to expand liability protections for food in two new important ways:

  1. Liability protections now cover nonprofit organizations and others that provide donated food products at a low price (an amount that covers the cost of handling, administering, and distributing the food). This means that food pantries and other food distribution sites have the option to charge a small amount of money for food to help cover their operational costs.
  2. Liability protections now cover qualified direct donors (e.g. schools, restaurants, caterers, grocery stores, farmers) who donate good food directly to individuals or groups other than nonprofits. Previously, liability protections were only afforded to qualified donors if they donated the food via a 501c3 organization.

To see the videos broken up into chapters, visit these links:

To help spread the word about the liability protections that exist for food donors and to encourage more food donation, we developed a series of short informational videos featuring Chef Tom Colicchio. Creating a food donation program for your restaurant or food business doesn’t have to be time-consuming or stressful.

Please see the other downloads and related resources below on this page to help get started as well, and to find local places in your area to donate food, please visit Food Rescue Locator.

Other resources: