Announcing our brilliant new project with FareShare!

We’ve been putting in place a brand new project, helping to tackle food poverty with FareShare, for the last few months… and now we get to share the news with you in a guest blog below by Richard Mason, CSR Manager at Asda.

You might have seen some media coverage already such as that in the Observer at the weekend but Richard wanted to give my blog readers his inside track. At the end of last year he personally went on a mission to see how Asda could increase our support for those in food poverty – perfectly aligned with our mission of saving people money every day. Thanks to his efforts this project is massive and will make a difference to nearly 44,000 people every day. I’ve been working alongside him as he worked up this project and I’d like to congratulate him for delivering this amazing result.

Richard tells us:

Food poverty has been hitting the headlines recently, with a recent report finding that 3.5 million adults and 500,000 children can’t afford to eat properly. We’re working with FareShare, the national charity committed to fighting hunger. From time to time, we get surplus stock arriving at our distribution centres. Instead of letting it go to waste, we’re going to send it to FareShare depots. From there, they’ll distribute it to over 900 charities, where it’s cooked and served to people who really need it. So, perfectly good food will make a difference to people who really need it.

In 2012 FareShare redistributed enough food for over 8.6 million meals. That’s enough to feed 43,700 people every day. The food that Asda sends will result in another 3.75 million meals by the end of the year!

We’re really excited about the partnership. The food is just the start of the story… The charities provide a whole range of services, such as housing homeless people and providing a refuge from domestic violence. The promise of a hot meal often gets people through the door but, once they’re there, volunteers are on hand to listen, offer advice, and help get people back on their feet. Thanks to our food donations, the charities will save £4.5 million – money that they can invest in other essential services.

Of course, we’re working hard to reduce surplus food stock in the first place, but sometimes it just can’t be avoided. Sometimes suppliers send ‘overs’ or stock that we haven’t ordered; a couple of extra cases here and there can quickly add up to thousands of surplus cases each week. This food is in date and perfectly edible – so what better than to make sure it’s put to good use, helping people who need it the most.

Posted by Julian on 05 June 2013
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