Shaw's Supermarkets has agreed to reverse a policy and resume contributions to food pantries in Maine and throughout New England.
The announcement comes at a time of high food insecurity in Maine and follows pressure from Democratic U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree, who's made eliminating food waste a goal in Congress.
After initially rolling out the program in Massachusetts and Maine, Shaw's will expand it to stores in New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont.
In 2013, Shaw's notified all Maine food banks and pantries that it would no longer donate food. A spokeswoman declined to say why Tuesday, instead stating: "At the time we were re-evaluating a number of our business processes."
Now, Shaw's says it's in a position to relaunch the Fresh Program by working with the charity Feeding America.