What Is a Meals of Hope Franchise?
Meal packing franchise gives entrepreneurs the ability to do good in business by doing good in their community
Meals of Hope was never intended to be a franchise. In fact, Meals of Hope was founded as a nonprofit in 2007 with the simple mission of sending food to Haiti, one of the most impoverished countries on our planet.
Like so many great ideas, Meals of Hope came from a mom. In this case, it was President and CEO Steve Popper’s mother who convinced her son to figure out a way to meet the need and give back. At the time, Steve was operating a lumber-wholesaling company and was shipping containers all over the world – but he never shipped food. He decided that the best way to help out was to organize a meal packing event through his local Rotary club and put out a call for volunteers. He would supply the ingredients for the volunteers to pack up, and help with the logistics of getting the food where it needed to go. All he needed was for people to show up.
On the day of the event, over 500 people showed up and in the span of just a few hours, they had packed over 135,000 meals.
“The turnout was incredible, and I thought, let’s see if we can pack a million meals in a year,” Steve says. “It took us less than a year to reach that goal. I decided to keep going and to really focus on meeting the need in my local community of Southwest Florida. Meals of Hope was becoming so successful that in 2012 I sold my partnership share of the lumber business to pursue this full time. Since then, we’ve done remarkable things. We’ve packed over 80 million meals. We’ve started 15 food pantries that feed over 10,000 people a week (about 4,000 families). And now, we decided that the best way to expand our ability to fight the hunger crisis is to franchise our model and expand across the country. We’re so excited to be in a position to help entrepreneurs own businesses that have tremendous profit-potential while also making such a tremendous difference in people’s lives.”
How does our business model work?
Meals of Hope is an incredibly unique business model because our parent company is a certified nonprofit that is focused on solving the hunger crisis and helping communities become food secure. As a franchise system, our mission is to support our franchise owners as they grow businesses that seek to end hunger in their communities.
This is why our business model is as straightforward as it gets. Meals of Hope franchise owners spend their time building relationships with organizations, such as charities, businesses, universities, and houses of worship to sponsor meal packing events. The sponsors of the event supply the venue, provide the volunteers, and the site to hold the event, to ensure that the event is successful. The parent company of Meals of Hope supplies the ingredients to be packed for each event – and once the event is over, the food is picked up by the local food bank.
All our franchise owners have to do is find a sponsor for every event, and ensure that the events are fun, safe, and memorable experiences for all involved. Meals of Hope franchise owners get paid a percentage for every meal that is packed at their events, and our events can pack anywhere from 10,000 meals to over 1 million.
“This is a business that’s all about building relationships,” Steve says. “Our franchise owners are going to be spending their time networking in their communities and forming relationships that are based on a shared commitment to give back. We’ve discovered that there’s no shortage of organizations, charities, businesses, houses of worship, and colleges and universities who want to host an event. When they hear the impact that one event can have, it becomes a common sense decision to host it. The more events our franchise owners can organize, the more successful they become in business – and more importantly, the more people they’re able to help.”
We only have 64 territories available
Meals of Hope isn’t in business to sell hundreds of franchise locations. We’re in business to send millions of meals to the people who need them most every year. We’re in business to end hunger, plain and simple.
Because of this, we’ve decided that in order for our franchise owners to have the strongest growth potential and ability to forge the relationships necessary to put on dozens of events every year, our territories need to be large, protected and exclusive.
This is why we only have 64 territories available across the country. Our territories consist of about four million people, and cover large geographic areas. In some cases, territories are entire states, and in others, territories are determined by population density and geographical area.
“Now is the time to invest in a Meals of Hope franchise,” says Jack Day, Director of Franchise Development. “We only have 64 territories available, which means, once they’re gone, they’re gone. This is an incredible opportunity for entrepreneurs who are ready to leverage their leadership skills, their relationship building skills, and desire to help make the place where they live more food secure. This is a vitally important issue, and we’ve proven that this business model can have an enormous impact. We’re excited to partner with entrepreneurs who share our commitment to fighting the hunger crisis.”
We are with you every step of the way
Franchising with Meals of Hope means that you’re joining a family of entrepreneurs who all committed to making a difference. Our franchise owners receive world class training and ongoing support, including marketing, professional development, and ongoing mentoring and coaching from the very people who built this business into what it is today.
Our leadership team is incredibly hands-on, and will be there to support you in every aspect of your business. We know that if you’re successful, the entire Meals of Hope franchise family will be successful. And this is why we’re committed to helping you every step of the way.
“We don’t call our owners franchisees, we call them Packing Partners, because they are truly partners of Meals of Hope,” Steve says. “They are a part of a family that’s committed to doing whatever we can to help them grow and thrive. Nothing about our end is done with financial gain in mind. Even our franchise fee goes to support the food pantries that feed 1,000 people a week. The more successful our franchise owners are, the more people we all get to help together.”
Ready to own a Meals of Hope franchise?
If you’re ready to learn more about how you can make a living while making a difference in your community, fill out an inquiry form and start a conversation with us. We look forward to speaking with you!