FOR THE CHIPPEWA HERALD A local food provider is taking initiative to get their employees contributing to the local economy.
As part of a renewed focus on providing direct support to local businesses, IFD Foodservice Distributor in Eau Claire has introduced an incentive program that empowers employees to buy local.
IFD’s Support Local initiative connects its 200 employees and their families with local businesses. Starting July 19 as an ongoing initiative, IFD employees are encouraged to make purchases at foodservice establishments in the Chippewa Valley.
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When they do so, Local Support cards are given to the server and restaurant owner in appreciation of their hospitality. By returning the card to The Market at IFD (formerly known as the IFD Warehouse Store), the owner and server are entered into weekly contests.
For the owner, the opportunity of a business credit and for the server, a prize drawing. Additionally, special offers in the store are given for those returning the card.
Jessie Braun, sales and marketing administrator for IFD Foodservice Distributor, said the campaign was created because IFD knows its employees are going to restaurants already, so they might as well support local businesses first when they do so.
“This is essentially being created to start a community group to support the Chippewa Valley,” Braun said. “We want to get our employees involved in giving back to the businesses that help support IFD. We know they’re going out to restaurants, so we are trying to encourage them to pick places that are local or independently owned first instead of national chain restaurants that are everywhere. The hope is that money will circulate back into the Chippewa Valley economy.”
The idea for the support local campaign stretches back more than a year, before the COVID-19 pandemic hit and changed the economic landscape of not just the United States, but the world at large.
“COVID-19 wasn’t a contributing factor, but this campaign is coming at a good time to combat the effects of it,” Braun said. “We’ve been thinking about this for over a year, so it’s just a coincidence. But everyone needs support right now.”
Going forward IFD Foodservice Distributor said the goal for the program is to see it grow and involve exclusive deals and prizes at different locations to cater to that businesses ideals and themes.
While the employees’ willingness to choose local first and the economic impact this will have on the Chippewa Valley economy are variables to the success of this campaign, Braun said the desired outcome is to see the community benefit from it in whatever form that takes.
“The best scenario is if everyone who works at IFD feels involved, important and significant,” Braun said. “They should feel their money, time and choices really matter to their community. If we happen to develop new relationships with restaurants, that’s just a great byproduct. This is all about getting our employees involved in our great community.”
Eau Claire (WQOW) - An Eau Claire company that supplies local restaurants is encouraging its employees to buy local through a new campaign.
In July, IFD Foodservice Distributor introduce the "Support Local Initiative."
When an IFD employee buys something from a food service establishment in the Chippewa Valley, they can give "local support cards" to the server and restaurant owner.
When the cards are returned to IFD, the restaurant or deli owner gets an opportunity for business credit, and the server is entered into a weekly gift contest. Plus, the IFD employee also has a chance to win prizes.
"We know a significant portion of our business is servicing the restaurant industry and we need to recognize how they've been impacted by the pandemic, so we thought this was a nice gesture to get our employees to recognize this and to get out in the community, in the Eau Claire region, the Chippewa Valley and help support our local economies," said Jim Kacvinsky, IFD vice president of sales and marketing.
IFD plans to partner with different businesses for the incentive program in the future.
EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) - IFD Foodservice Distributor (IFD), which provides wholesale food options for bars, restaurants, schools, and local events and gatherings, is launching a Support Local initiative.
They’re giving Local Support cards to each of their 200 employees, who are encouraged to give them to restaurant owners and food servers where they make purchases.
The restaurant owners and servers can then return the card to the Market at IFD to be entered into a weekly contest. The owner could win business credit and the server could win the opportunity of a prize drawing. Special offers in the store are also given to those who return the Local Support cards.
This is part of IFD’s promise to think local, buy local, and be local.
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