NEW JERSEY -- A new program called Sustain and Serve NJ has been launched by the NJEDA that enables struggling New Jersey restaurants to prepare meals that would be distributed to nonprofit organizations to feed for needy residents.

Sustain and Serve NJ is a COVID-19 relief effort that helps families that are going through a rough period while, at the same time, helping the restaurant industry, which has been hit hard by the pandemic and the restrictions put into place to halt the spread of the disease. The program provides grants of $100,000 or more for nonprofits to purchase meals in bulk from restaurants and distribute the food to the hungry. 

Nonprofit applicants must demonstrate experience in bulk purchase and distribution of at least 3,000 meals from New Jersey restaurants since the pandemic began in March. Grant applications are due by Jan. 8, 2021.

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Restaurants are not able to apply directly for the Sustain and Serve NJ program, but may participate by providing meals that are bought by a grant recipient organization. The NJEDA has published a list of restaurants that indicated interest in the program. Grant applicants may refer to this registry when purchasing meals. This list will be updated at weekly. Restaurants that would like to be included should complete the SSNJ Restaurant Interest Form.

Restaurant Eligibility:

  • 50 or fewer employees
  • A physical location in New Jersey
  • Legal registration to do business in New Jersey
  • Good standing with the NJ Dept. of Labor and NJ Division of Taxation
  • Good standing with the NJ Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control (where applicable)
  • Satisfactory certification from municipal or county government inspection 
  • Ability to demonstrate negative impacted of COVID-19 on a restaurant that was in operation on or before February 15, 2020.

Anyone with additional questions, should email SSNJ@njeda.com or call 844-965-1125 for assistance.