Kiolbassa Smoked Meats, a San Antonio-based smoked meats company, has supported people and communities in need since opening its doors in 1949. This year, in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, the company has made the decision to bolster its community enrichment efforts by creating a new program called “Links of Love.”
Through the Links of Love program, Kiolbassa will address two areas of need in San Antonio and beyond: food insecurity and disaster relief. The company has created a new Links of Love sausage product that will be distributed through two partner organizations. Kiolbassa has committed to donating 10,000 pounds of Links of Love Sausage each month.
“When my grandfather was a young man, he was a meat salesman during World War II,” explains Michael Kiolbassa, President of Kiolbassa Smoked Meats. “Food rationing was in effect, and he often came home in tears because some families had to go hungry. When he started this company, he vowed that he would never have to turn away a hungry individual again. This dedication to enriching communities has been part of our company’s DNA from the beginning and through this program we are hoping to maximize our impact.”
Links of Love sausage will be available exclusively through food banks and disaster relief meal preparation sites. It is made in small batches using premium meat and ingredients, just like the other products Kiolbassa fans know and love.
“When developing this program, it was very important to us that its recipients receive the same high-quality, delicious sausage that is available in stores,” says Kiolbassa. “We realize that the people we serve are facing difficult challenges. We may be serving people on what could be the most difficult day of their lives. We hope that the food we are providing gives them a little happiness, encouragement and hope.”
Kiolbassa has selected two partner organizations to assist in the implementation of the Links of Love program. To assist in supporting disaster relief efforts, Kiolbassa is partnering with Mercy Chefs, a non-profit disaster relief organization that serves chef prepared meals for victims, volunteers and first responders in national emergencies and natural disasters.
“Kiolbassa has been a partner of Mercy Chefs for some time,” says Gary LeBlanc, founder of Mercy Chefs. “They’ve been a part of many of our disaster deployments in the last few years. Their commitment to quality matches our commitment to feeding disaster victims the highest quality meals we can possibly make.”
To assist in addressing food insecurity, the company will partner with Feeding America®, a network of 200 food banks and 60,000 food pantries and meal programs.
“As a result of the pandemic, 50 million people in America may face hunger. Food banks are on the ground addressing the increased need for food assistance,” said Blake Thompson, Chief Supply Chain Officer at Feeding America. “We are grateful for Kiolbassa’s support, which will help food banks provide more meals to our neighbors in need.”
Kiolbassa has also teamed up with several supply chain partners to help make the Links of Love product possible. These partners include Victory Packaging who will donate shipping boxes, GP Labels who will donate labels, Sealed Air who will donate film for the packages and Bee Trucking who has provided a delivery driver.
“We are very thankful for these supply chain partners. Because of their donations we are ultimately able to provide more meals for those in need,” says Kiolbassa. “It has been great to see so many of our partners rallying around this effort, especially this year when the need is greater than ever.”
For more information on the Links of Love program visit www.kiolbassa.com.
Source: Kiolbassa Smoked Meats