LIMA — While SpartanNash is well-known for food distribution and its retail brands, what really sets the company apart, according to Meredith Gremel, the company’s vice president of corporate affairs and communications, is SpartanNash’s emphasis on community support and building local relationships.
“Some people refer to purpose beyond a paycheck. Certainly it’s very rewarding the role that you play in the supply chain to ensure food safety and food quality … that’s what our associates do very well, but beyond that, we want to be in the communities that we deliver to,” Gremel said. “The associates feel proud that the company stands for something more than the job they do every day, and they’re truly committed to making it stronger and better.”
SpartanNash has the numbers to back up what it does. In 2018, the company tracked more than 57,000 volunteer hours from employees located across its national supply chain, with $13.8 million in donations given to community partners.
In Lima alone, 86 of the company’s associates logged 3,452 hours, and 13 of those employees spent more than 100 hours volunteering in the community in the past year. The company also donated $5,000 to the West Ohio Food Bank in 2018.
Outside of volunteer hours, SpartanNash emphasizes corporate and environmental responsibility, Gremel said. The company installed solar panels on a number of its tractor trailers to power on-board heating or cooling systems, optimized its routes to decrease the number of miles traveled and emphasized better aerodynamic equipment to cut down on fuel costs.
Each month, SpartanNash communicates with its employees about corporate efforts to better its communities, tracking the company’s efforts to organize emergency relief for hurricane victims, recording the poundage of recycled materials and giving updates to the number of donations sent to Goodwill, among many other corporate initiatives.
Ultimately, the dedication to being a good corporate citizen helps the company create better buy-in for its employees, sometimes even attracting workers from the same family to seek employment with the company.
“There is so much written and said around the culture of a company,” Gremel said. “But it’s really what you stand for.”
SpartanNash’s 497,000 square-foot location in Lima employs 250 workers and tracks 13,500 food and food-related products.
Reach Josh Ellerbrock at 567-242-0398.