|July 8, 2011||to||July 11, 2011|
While shoppers might normally be expected to take food away from a supermarket, customers at Sainsbury’s Lewes Road will this weekend be leaving food behind too. The store, situated in Lewes Road, Brighton, is taking part in a food donation trial through which customers will be asked to buy an extra item, which will then be delivered to local community projects.
The trial is being run in partnership with FareShare, the national food charity that addresses hunger in the UK by redistributing quality surplus food from the food industry to people who need it across the country. Sainsbury’s has been working with FareShare since 1994 but this is the first time customers are being asked to actively take part.
Sainsbury’s retail and logistics director, Roger Burnley, said: “The food we donate to FareShare tends to be fresh produce as this has the shortest shelf life. However, to make a nutritious meal, you need more than just fresh food, which is why we would like to give customers the opportunity to donate food through this unique trial.”
“Anything donated by customers in Lewes Road will go to the FareShare Brighton depot for redistribution to local charities that really need it such as the Fresh Start Community Association”.
Lindsay Boswell, FareShare Chief Executive, said: “Sainsbury’s has been involved with FareShare since the beginning, working with us to ensure that good food isn’t wasted. If food cannot be sold, but can be eaten, it should always go to people first.
“With this food trial, we have a fantastic opportunity to engage with individuals: Sainsbury’s customers will be able to support hungry people in their local area in a very tangible way and generally support a charity who offers a very practical solution to the issues of food waste and food poverty.
“We would like to encourage anyone who has an interest in food and supporting vulnerable people to support FareShare. With their help, we can feed even more good food to some of the poorest people in our society”.
Hundreds of hostels, shelters and schools benefit from the work FareShare carries out across the country, including the Fresh Start Community Association, who run several community initiatives working with marginalised groups, such as a day centre, drop in service and out of school club. They provide a cooked meal on site at every group gathering, as well as encourage healthy eating with food support bags for families struggling because of the economic climate.
Machelle Joseph, Project Manager at the Fresh Start Community Association
said: “When families are struggling to cover bills and mortgage repayments, food is last on their agenda. We help and we have become the main safety net for many families and individuals. Also, mums from ethnic background are sometimes not sure how to use local foods and we show them how and create community cohesion”.
In the current climate, the need for FareShare has never been greater, with more and more people finding it hard to access good food and fewer and fewer organisations being able to provide the vital services.
The trial, which takes place in 19 Sainsbury’s stores across the UK, begins on Friday July 8th and will continue until Sunday July 10th. Customers can choose from a variety of suggested items, which are purchased as normal and left with the cashier at the till to be distributed at the end of the trial.