Neighborhood Hub – Milan Food Policy

MILAN, ITALY - JULY 15: <> attends an AC Milan Portrait Session at  on July 15, 2021 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Pier Marco  Tacca/AC Milan via Getty Images)

Fondazione Milan supports the construction of a neighborhood Hub against food waste for needy families with children


“ASSIST” consists of a series of social and welfare initiatives through which Fondazione Milan is committed on a daily basis to ensure its contribution and support to the community, and in particular to the most vulnerable and needy. Following the economic support offered to the Milan Food Hubs for the distribution of meals to families in need during the Coronavirus emergency, Milan Foundation is preparing to renew and extend its social commitment in the project “Neighborhood Hubs against Food Waste”.

The initiative, part of the Milan Food Policy program, consists in the concrete realization of the fourth Hub against food waste, in the Gallaratese neighborhood, in zone 8. The birth of the fourth Hub is aimed at achieving a collection of 60 tons of food per year, equivalent to 220,000 meals, so as to continue to combat food waste and at the same time offer support to families in economic difficulty.

In particular, the new Hub will also be dedicated to the needs of the youngest, and therefore to families with children and infants, and will become a collection center not only for food, but also for baby products.


In Italy, as in the rest of the world, the health emergency caused by the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic has led to serious consequences that have affected and deteriorated the socio-economic and productive fabric of our country. It is in fact a source of great concern the increase in the rate of poverty, and of the so-called “new poor”, which as a result of the emergency goes from 31% to 45% of Italians. There are therefore many workers and families who, for the first time, have experienced conditions of hardship and have therefore found themselves obliged to turn to local Third Sector organizations for support.

The pandemic crisis has also led to an accentuation of social inequalities, hitting hardest those who were already in conditions of economic difficulty. Finally, there has been a collapse in the employment rate of women, which in recent months has fallen by more than double that of men. The wide gender gap and female unemployment thus generate a decrease in the income of families, especially those with dependent children and minors.

The situation therefore requires greater social compromise in support of families and children, and it is for this reason that Fondazione Milan has been involved in the creation of the fourth food hub in the city of Milan, dedicated to them.


The project foresees the close collaboration between the municipal administration, the institutional partners, i.e. Politecnico di Milano, Assolombarda and Fondazione Cariplo, and the financial and technical sponsors, including Fondazione Milan. A co-planning table will therefore be activated to innovate the traditional methods of food recovery to be destined to the needy, experimenting with an Operational Model adapted to the particular needs of the territory, with the ultimate aim of making Milan a zero-waste city.

The Operating Model defines first of all the product categories suitable for recovery, and the application of certain recovery procedures based on the different product classes. The model assumes five working days per week, during which the morning will be dedicated to the recovery of fresh and dry packaged food, including bread and fruit, surplus in supermarkets; in the afternoon, instead, will be recovered the food cooked and not served in surplus from company canteens.

Lastly, the model envisages that the points of sale and company canteens taking part in the project collect, on a daily basis, quantitative data for measuring and monitoring surplus food, so as to be able to carry out a precise assessment of the impact, identifying success factors and any critical points.



This activity of the “ASSIST” project is part of the Milan Food Policy program in which they participate:

Comune di Milano

Fondazione Milan

Politecnico di Milano


Fondazione Cariplo