Like good food? Hate waste? Want to save money? South Leeds residents are being invited to sign up for large weekly boxes of so-called ‘freegan’ food (good quality food that would otherwise have been binned), delivered to a local collection point, for just £13.50.
The family-sized crates have different contents each week, but will include a mix of staple and luxury products, and fresh and packeted food. They are sourced and delivered by Leeds charity Food Revival – a spin-off from the Real Junk Food Project.
Food Revival is one of a growing number of organisations working to end the needless waste of surplus food. They intercept food that’s heading unnecessarily for landfill, and distribute it through a network of cafes, ‘sharehouses’, schools, and popular community box schemes such as this one. A successful pilot box scheme ran in Beeston last year (reported here), but the organisation didn’t at that time have the capacity to make it full-time: they do now.
This scheme will initially run in Beeston, with participants collecting their boxes each week from Rowland Road Social Club – although talks are afoot to set up a second scheme in Hunslet. But both schemes are dependent upon enough local households signing up – so residents are encouraged to sign up ASAP, before the opportunity passes!
Local resident and community campaigner Ed Carlisle, who is helping to bring the scheme to south Leeds, commented:
“Loads of people locally struggle to afford good quality food – and in the meantime, countless tons of good food is being chucked away across the country: madness. But this scheme breaks the mould, and gives us great food for cheap – whilst reducing waste, and helping to save the planet. Please sign up, and spread the word too – this could make a massive difference in our communities.”
For more info, click here. To sign up, email email@example.com, or contact them otherwise here – and state that you want to sign up for the south Leeds scheme. Once enough participants have signed up, you will be asked to set up a £13.50 weekly direct debit – to cover the cost of collection, storage and assembly of the food. (You can also donate more, on a zero obligation ‘Pay As You Feel’ basis, if you’re able.) The boxes will be available to collect during a 6pm-11pm window one evening per week from Rowland Road; details of any future Hunslet scheme are yet to be agreed.
The Waste Resources Action Programme (WRAP) – a UK charity and campaign body – estimates that 1.9m tons of food is wasted by the UK food industry every year, with about a fifth of that (400,000 tonnes) suitable for redistribution.