The COVID-19 crisis demands we work together, find the calm where we can and most importantly, take care of each other. Our approach is, and continues to be, to put the safety and wellbeing of our Mars Associates first, do our part to prevent the spread of the coronavirus and care for our communities. This includes our initial $20 million commitment of cash and in-kind donations to support the people, pets and communities most affected by COVID-19.
The support package includes:
- A $5 million donation to support CARE International for critical supplies and expertise that will be deployed to women, children and refugee populations in the developing world.
- A $2 million donation to the United Nation’s World Food Programme to aid in the transport and delivery of critical supplies for all United Nations agencies as they respond to the pandemic.
- A $1 million donation to Humane Society International to help cats and dogs that have been abandoned, left behind or surrendered to shelters due to their owners falling ill or no longer having the financial means to care for them.
The balance of $12 million will come from a combination of cash and in-kind donations from across the markets where Mars operates, as well as donations from its Foundations including: the Mars Wrigley Foundation, the Banfield Foundation, PEDIGREE Foundation and the Tasty Bite Foundation.
In addition to the $20 million global commitment, the Mars Foundation, located in McLean, Virginia, announced a $500,000 cash donation to the Capital Area Food Bank serving the greater Washington, D.C., metro area. Many Mars sites and businesses in the United States and around the globe have channeled their creativity to provide much needed items to those who are on the front lines of the crisis.
Providing Critical Medical Care in India
The COVID-19 virus and a more contagious variant have spread rapidly throughout India, where our 6,000 Associates, contractors and farmers live and work.
We want to do what we can to help India’s overloaded health system by providing $2.3 million in critical medical supplies. We’re working with Oxfam , CARE, Business Fights Poverty/Crown Agents, and a local organization called Sankalp Beautiful World, to support local health care and hospitals throughout Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.
As part of the total, the Mars Wrigley Foundation has awarded $300,000 to Save the Children , who will provide broader healthcare services for families and children. The Tasty Bite Foundation, a nonprofit organization of Tasty Bite Eatables Limited, a Mars group entity, has also donated approximately $82,000 to create two health care centers with 160 beds each for affected patients and have equipped two hospitals with life-saving equipment and medicines in Maharashtra.
This is just part of many such initiatives we’re undertaking — not only for the wellbeing of our workforce, but also for the communities where we operate and source our ingredients.
Mars Associates Are Stepping Up to Help Right Now
You know us by our brands—from chocolate, gum and food for both for you and your pets, as well as high-quality care for pets and personalized nutrition. But what unites over 130,000+ Mars Associates is our passion. We believe our bold actions today can create a better world tomorrow. And in these trying times, we know we are all in this together and are proud to help those in need right now.
We’re proud of how our Mars Associates put our purpose into practice every day—especially in this time of crisis. Our donations comprise both food and financial support from Mars Wrigley, Mars Food, Mars Petcare, Mars Edge and Multisales. Here are some of our efforts to date:
Mars Wrigley Brings Smiles to the Front Lines
We are touched by the kindness, generosity and creativity of our teams all over the world who are connecting our much-loved brands with people in new and different ways to help put smiles on their faces. Here are some of their efforts to date:
- Around the world, from China to the U.K., U.S. and many other countries, our Mars Wrigley teams are bringing #BetterMoments to those who need it most—our health workers and careers.
- Mars Wrigley U.S. has committed $1 million in product donations to organizations including Operation Gratitude, Feeding America™ and Comfort, the U.S. Navy hospital ship stationed in New York Harbor to support relief efforts.
- The Mars Wrigley Foundation will provide an additional $3 million of financial relief to NGOs in support of COVID-19 relief efforts in communities where Mars Wrigley operates sites.
- KIND® Healthy Snacks has distributed 1 million KIND® bars to health care workers on the front line as part of its commitment to donate a minimum of 5 million bars.
- AMERICAN HERITAGE® Chocolate has pledged the funds to help the nonprofit First Book distribute over 50,000 books to school-aged children in communities where Mars Wrigley U.S. Associates live and work. The books are distributed through feeding centers, homeless shelters and through partners like Save the Children® to help ensure children don’t fall behind while schools are closed.
- ETHEL M® Chocolates is sending chocolate care packages to essential workers at hospitals, pharmacies, trucking companies, schools, grocery stores, restaurants, sanitation companies and others who are helping on the front lines.
Mars Food Provides Essential Meals Where Needed
Mars Food is always working to create better food today for a better world tomorrow, and it’s never been more important to do this than it is now, as we deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. With more than $1.9 million in cash and in-kind donations globally to date, Mars Food and Multisales efforts have helped address some of the most urgent needs around the world right away.
Here are just some of the initiatives underway:
- Mars Food is donating more than 308,000 pounds of BEN'S ORIGINAL® rice valued at nearly $1 million to Feeding America™, the largest domestic hunger-relief organization in the U.S.
- Mars Food North America will match up to $50,000 in Associate donations to community partners Caledon Community Services in Ontario, Canada; Culinary Care in Chicago, and Hearty Helpings Food Pantry in Greenville, Mississippi, to aid in COVID-19 relief.
- Support also extends to medical professionals working tirelessly as front-line heroes. In Chicago, Mars Food provided more than 1,400 healthy meals to health care workers at Rush University Medical Center and Northwestern Memorial Hospital through a donation to Culinary Care.
With more than 2,000 Associates working in offices and 12 manufacturing sites worldwide, community support is also underway in France, India, the Netherlands and the U.K.
Mars Petcare Supports Pets and People
Our Mars Petcare purpose has always been to create A Better World for Pets™ and in these uncertain and challenging times, it remains our guiding light. Here are some of the other ways our Associates are supporting our response on the ground.
In just three weeks, the Mars Fishcare facility in Chalfont, Pennsylvania, produced and packaged 2,400 16-ounce spray bottles of hand sanitizer (close to 300 gallons), which was donated to local organizations to distribute to first responders and hospitals in need.
Mars Veterinary Health is centralizing its available supply of equipment and supplies for donation to human healthcare facilities in need, and to date has donated or loaned more than 28 mechanical ventilators and thousands of masks, gowns and consumables for breathing circuits to human healthcare facilities across the U.S., Spain, United Kingdom and France.
- Mars Pet Nutrition US, EUKANUBA™ brand and ROYAL CANIN® brands will donate over $2 million worth of pet food through Rescue Bank to support shelters, as well as human and pet food pantries.
- The PEDIGREE Foundation is transferring its planned 2020 Operation Grants funds to Disaster Relief Grants for COVID-19 support, redirecting $175,000 in grants for animal shelters and rescues.
- The Mars BETTER CITIES FOR PETS™ program in North America partnered with the Humane Society of the United States for the “Rock the House for Animals” virtual benefit concert. The BETTER CITIES FOR PETS™ program will match up to $100,000 in donations for grants that benefit people, pets and shelters impacted by COVID-19.
We take pride in the actions our Associates are taking every day to help the communities where we live and operate through this crisis.