Recipe for Joy: Sending E-Cards to Help the Hungry

Kraft Teams With American Greetings to Benefit Feeding America

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Working to spread holiday cheer this year, Kraft Foods is partnering with American Greetings in Recipe for Joy, an e-card program that benefits Feeding America, the nation's leading hunger-relief charity.

For every free Kraft-American Greetings e-card sent by Dec. 31 through the Recipe for Joy program, Kraft will donate 10 meals to Feeding America. While the company originally set a goal of 1 million meals, the campaign has been so successful since its Nov. 16 introduction that Kraft has already tripled that initial target.

"We started that program right before Thanksgiving and expected to hit 1 million meals by the end of the [December] holidays," says Kelley Woodland, senior director, consumer relationship marketing at Kraft Foods North America. "Because it seemed to resonate, we increased our commitment to up to 3 million meals. ... Because the response was so quick, we decided to put our money where our mouth is."

The cards are especially appealing to Kraft's core audience, described by Ms. Woodland as a "food-based community," because each card includes recipes and entertaining tips for the holiday season that recipients can download to a desktop recipe box.

To promote Recipe for Joy, Kraft turned to several media outlets, including sponsoring a holiday movie on the Hallmark Channel; segments on the Home Shopping Network as well as messaging on its Web site and through its e-mail outreach program; and a blogger contest. The company is also using its own properties – including Food&Family, Comida y Familia,, and Recipe by Email -- as well as Facebook and Twitter.

The e-card program was inspired by consumers' interest in giving to their communities during the holiday season, Ms. Woodland says. "As we were looking into some insights from research," she says, "the interest in giving back over the holiday season is something that emerged. We wanted to find a way to make it a consumer-driven program while supporting our consumers' goal to give back over the holidays."

Kraft has been a longtime supporter of Feeding America. Over the past 25 years, it says it has donated more than $770 million in money and food to that organization and other hunger-relief efforts worldwide, providing more than 1 billion servings of food to people in need since 1997.

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