About GFN

We started with the support of four food bank networks and the belief that community-led solutions for hunger should be embraced across the globe. Now we’re a growing Network spanning more than 50 countries and powered by our founding vision.
volunteer food items

The GFN Story

When GFN launched in 2006, the concept of a “food bank” was unknown in many parts of the world. GFN Co-Founder Chris Rebstock, GFN President and CEO Lisa Moon, and GFN Latin America Regional Director and former Banco de Alimentos de México General Director María Teresa García Plata reflect on how GFN has evolved to serve its food bank members around the world.

Our Mission

To nourish the world’s hungry through uniting and advancing food banks.

Our Vision

A world free of hunger.

Our Values

Lead with inspiration
We inspire and enable action through our expertise, vision, and commitment to system change.
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Champion community-led solutions
We support community-led solutions as the best way to address food insecurity.
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Create sustainable impact
We add value and impact by developing innovative solutions in service of our mission.
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Honor our commitments
We are accountable to our members, each other and our mission.
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Center diversity, equity and inclusion
We are committed to advancing diversity, equity and inclusion in our workplace recognizing the inherent power and privilege imbalances in our work.
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Learn and innovate
We approach our work with curiosity and continuously improve through collaboration, innovation, and learning.
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Explore the timeline
to celebrate key moments in GFN’s history


Forming The Global FoodBanking Network

Driven by the vision of Robert Forney and William Rudnick, with support from Chris Rebstock, four organizations—Bancos de Alimentos de México, Feeding America, Food Banks Canada, and Red Argentina de Bancos de Alimentos—together establish The Global FoodBanking Network to alleviate global hunger by supporting community-led food banks.

The First Food Bank Leadership Institute

GFN organizes the Food Bank Leadership Institute (FBLI) to gather food bank representatives from around the world for the first time. Thirty-six people from nine countries, representing 12 food banks and other civil society and corporate partners, attend this first FBLI.
GFN Co-founder and Leader, Robert H. Forney, Passes Away.

Forming New Partnerships

GFN and the European Food Banks Federation (FEBA) begin to formally collaborate to address hunger through food banking in their respective geographies. GFN hires its first international consultant based in Latin America, a first step in its vision to have a workforce that reflects the diverse Network it is serving.

Expanding Our Work

To increase food banking’s impact on hunger, GFN expands its work beyond certification to include broader strategic technical assistance (e.g., product sourcing, child hunger) and grantmaking, especially in emerging and developing markets.
2018 -

Measuring Food Banking's Environmental Impact

GFN, in partnership with European Food Banks Federation and Feeding America, document for the first time the collective impact of food banks in 60+ countries and their contributions to Sustainable Development Goal 2 (Zero Hunger) and Sustainable Development target 12.3 (Halving Food Loss and Waste) through our reports, The State of Global Food Banking and Waste Not, Want Not.

Setting Our North Star Goal

GFN commits to supporting local food banks to serve 50 million people facing hunger by 2030. Aligned with SDG 2, GFN expands its geographic focus to markets where food insecurity and hunger needs are especially pronounced, including Southeast Asia, India, and sub-Saharan Africa.
2020 -

Facing COVID-19

GFN member food banks face an unprecedented test because of COVID-19. Food banks prove to be agile frontline service providers as they expand capacity immensely and meet the needs of unfathomable numbers of people around the world.

Supporting Growing and Start-up Food Banks

GFN launches the New Food Bank Development program to help visionary local leaders improve food access in their communities.

A New Strategic Plan

GFN launches the FY23-27 strategic plan, which seeks to position food banks firmly in global food systems conversations, expand the Network in emerging and developing markets where hunger needs are greatest, and continue providing excellent support to member food banks.

Food Bank Leadership Institute Reconvenes in Mexico City

GFN and Red BAMX host FBLI 2023 in Mexico City, Mexico. This was the first in-person FBLI since 2019 when it was hosted in London. In 2023, FBLI welcomed over 350 people from nearly 50 countries.

Hosting Food Loss and Waste Day at COP28

In Dubai, United Arab Emirates, GFN hosts the first Food Loss and Waste Day at COP28’s Food Systems Pavilion. A series of expert-led panels shine a light on solutions to food loss and waste and its impact on climate change.
Thirteen food banks graduate from GFN’s first Accelerator cohort. The second cohort begins and welcomes six food banks that will participate in the program for the next three years.

The Next Generation of Our Annual Conference

GFN announces the next generation of its annual gathering, shifting from the Food Bank Leadership Institute to the GFN Global Summit. The Summit takes place in Sydney, Australia, in September.
Meet the Staff Who are Powering GFN Today