Kentucky House Passes Bill to Encourage Food Donations

Wednesday, the Kentucky House passed a bill to encourage food providers to donate more food without fear of legal prosecution. 

House Bill 237, sponsored by Rep. Phillip Pratt, R-Georgetown, will strengthen Kentucky’s immunity shield for food donations.

The goal of the legislation is to encourage food providers to donate more food without fear of legal prosecution by requiring individuals who claim to have been harmed by consuming donated food to show that the donating entity committed intentional misconduct.

“This bill protects people and their businesses who try to donate food from the goodness of their heart,” said Rep. Pratt. “A person or store should not face criminal charges for trying to do the right thing.”

Rep. Pratt’s bill is in response to Kentucky’s grocery stores throwing away thousands of pounds of food every year instead of donating the food. 

These stores have even gone as far the locking their waste disposals out of fear of someone eating the food and suing the store for personal injury.

Department of Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles thanked Rep. Pratt for his hard work on this legislation and added, “This adds protections for businesses and individuals who donate foods to nonprofit organizations for Kentucky’s hungry.

This legislation is a product of the Kentucky Hunger Initiative that we launched last spring, and it would give Kentucky one of the strongest laws on charitable giving in the nation.

I look forward to working with the Senate on passage of this legislation, which will make healthy, nutritious foods available to our friends and neighbors in need.”

The measure passed the Kentucky House in bipartisan fashion, and now heads to the Senate for consideration where, if passed, will be sent to Governor Matt Bevin to be signed into law. 

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