Shopping at Plaid Pantry Is Good for Portland

The local convenience store chain’s December charity drive helps the city in a big way.

Sponsored Content Presented by Plaid Pantry.

Plaid Pantry is Portland’s old reliable when it comes to late-night snack runs. And you know it’s locally owned and operated, evidenced by the reach in refrigerators stocked with local microbrews, and the stacks of locally produced jerky, sunflower seeds, and kale chips that line the aisles.

Serving over 60,000 customers daily, Plaid Pantry is a vital part of Portland’s food and drink ecosystem. But this month, the money you spend at your local Plaid also helps local nonprofits.

In their commitment to support our community, the Northwest convenience store chain has developed and honed a charity campaign that is driven by store managers and customers. Who knew helping our neighbors could be done while grabbing some Keto Cookies on your way home for a fourth meal.

This December marks the fourth annual charity campaign for Plaid Pantry—supporting three local nonprofits: Portland Youth Builders, Rose Haven, and Morrison Child and Family Services.

These organizations were chosen and vetted by Plaid Pantry staff, who were careful to determine impactful organizations. We spoke with a few of the store managers who helped develop this year’s program. “Plaid Pantry is a very local and community-involved store. We support a lot of Portland’s neighborhoods. So we sat down and brainstormed local charities in Portland, and we tried to focus on the ones that we felt Plaid Pantry would be most helpful towards and also bring more awareness of,” said store manager Don Grentz.

Plaid Pantry is also running the program in Salem, where it’s partnering with Northwest Human Services, Turtle Ridge Wildlife, and Helping Hands.

“We used to work with national charities, but we have since moved away from that,” said store manager Sean Brill. “I think it’s important to choose local charities because it directly impacts the community that we live in.”

How does it work?

During the month of December, when customers shop at Plaid Pantry, they have the opportunity to donate towards up to three charities during checkout. Customer contributions will be received through tear pads, where a description of each nonprofit’s mission statement and services will be displayed to aid the decision-making process. Plaid Pantry will also show its appreciation to participating vendors through various means, including a promotional shelf cling, brand and logo placement on the Plaid Pantry website, and social media posts highlighting vendor sponsors.

“I’ve actually volunteered with a lot of the charities we work with and I’ve seen them help people in my neighborhood. So it’s pretty amazing to be able to help the community and know that my neighbors are directly benefiting from my collecting these donations” said store manager Madelain (Maddy) Jones. “For instance, once while requesting donations for Morrison Child and Family Services, this woman kind of broke down a little bit and told me the organization had helped her get back on her feet a few years ago. She came back later that day and donated $50.”

Plaid Pantry’s charity program shows how the locally owned and operated chain not only puts the needs of its community first, it also serves as a great business model. “Whether it be a charity or just stepping out to volunteer to help pass out food to the homeless, community involvement is a very important part of any business,” said Grentz. Find your local Plaid Pantry at this link.