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Blog post

3.22.2022

2 Million Meals Later: What We’re Learning Serving San Francisco with Cruise For Good

Companies have a choice to make when building something new — focus on the most expedient way to get your product to market or dig in and understand how your product can help address today’s most pressing challenges sooner, not later.

At Cruise, we know what choice we’re making. 

A more sustainable, more equitable transportation future has been Cruise’s mission from the start. We’ve achieved exciting milestones in launching our all-electric, zero emission rideshare service — without letting up on our commitment to use our fleet in service of our community.  

When the pandemic hit and food insecurity skyrocketed, it became clear we could make an immediate impact with our driverless vehicles. 

We launched two long-term partnerships in early 2020, with the San Francisco-Marin Food Bank and SF New Deal, to address food insecurity by delivering meals to residents in need. Today, we’re proud to announce that our fleet of AVs has now delivered more than two million meals to low-income residents in San Francisco as part of our dedicated social impact program, Cruise for Good.

Many of these deliveries also support local restaurants run by small business owners, and more than 80% are distributed to households in San Francisco zip codes below the poverty line. 

One question, articulated so well by our partner Tanis Crosby, Executive Director at the San Francisco-Marin Food Bank, remains top of mind: How can we solve problems together and leverage technology to deliver equitable service at scale?’” 

Serving our communities is core to our mission. We recognize that in each local ecosystem of nonprofits, small businesses and volunteers, we have a role to play in supporting and building their capacity to deliver critical community needs. Long-term partnership, deeply rooted in every city we’re in — that’s the Cruise for Good commitment. It is anchored by our pledge to dedicate at least 1% of our fleet to serving the needs of our local communities, and is a core example of how AVs can serve the public good. 

The vision of AVs benefiting society is larger than any single company. The US Department of Transportation recently released its six principles of innovation: help America win the 21st century, support workers, tackle key policy priorities like safety, equity and climate change, provide opportunities to collaborate, and adapt as technology changes. The common thread among these principles was that technology can’t simply exist for its own sake: it must serve the social good. 

We couldn’t agree more. 

Every meal delivered by Cruise is completed by our all-electric AV, powered by 100% renewable energy. 

In 2021, we launched our Farm to Fleet program, an initiative that sources solar power generated by family-owned farms in California’s Central Valley to power our all-electric fleet. The renewable energy powering our meal deliveries is generated in some of the same agricultural communities that support our partners’ nutritional assistance programs, while providing farms with new economic opportunities.

Along with our incredible partners, we will continue to prioritize the needs of our communities — whether it’s partnering with EVNoire to study opportunities for AVs to mitigate disparities in transportation access, supporting Humanmade to engage historically excluded communities in the modern economy through jobs and skills training, partnering with stakeholders within the disability community to improve transportation accessibility, or helping pass a law that requires all new, light-duty AVs in California to be zero emission by 2030. 

I’m proud that social impact is core to Cruise’s DNA. Meal deliveries in San Francisco provide perhaps the most visible impact of this commitment, but what we’ve done to-date is just the start. 

We hope that others in the industry will join us in making the hard choice to dig in. AVs will have even more of a transformative impact, now and in the future, if we work together toward addressing our communities' most urgent needs.