- April 23, 2019
In the UK we throw away 7 million tonnes of food and drink from our homes every year and more than half of this is food and drink we could have eaten. 1
The Real Junk Food Project in Pudsey, near Leeds have opened up their warehouse for the public to buy from (either using cash, their time, energy or skills).
They’ve managed to get deals in place with Sainsbury’s, Morrisons and Ocado along with local restaurants, cafes, food photographers, caterers and even foodbanks in the hope of removing any waste from their processes.
Although the project would appear to be targeting those on low incomes, homeless people and the unemployed the campaigners for the project have clearly states it is open for all.
We don’t just feed ‘homeless people’, ‘the needy’, nor do we just feed asylum seekers, refugees, or whoever. We feed everyone.
In order for us to prove the value and safety of food waste, we couldn’t just feed specific demographics of people. We believe food waste is absolutely fit for human consumption and so that’s who we feed – human beings. 2
Alongside the warehouse they have Cafes across the country that operate on a Pay As You Feel payment system.
We are challenging the grey areas within food laws and regulations in order for common sense to prevail when dealing with food. We feed food past its expiration date to the general public, but we do not sell this produce.
Every single member of the Real Junk Food Project network operates a Pay As You Feel concept, which allows patrons to give back either financial donations, their time, energy or skills as a way of accessing the food, and to understand the value of the produce. 3
In the UK wasting food costs the average household £470 a year, rising to £700 for a family with children, the equivalent of around £60 a month. 4
Just a little reminder really, each year we donate around £6000 to ‘The Food Bank’ in Milton Keynes, this directly supports 1,200 families and ensures they will not go hungry each year – so thank you on behalf of them and thank you from everyone here.
According to the Trussell Trust, 1,109,309 three-day emergency food supply packages were given out at their foodbanks in 2015-16. In 2008-09, this figure was just 25,899. If you can support your local food bank then please do, we witnessed first hand the stringent rules in place to ensure the people getting the food are actually the ones that need it. It’s not a free for all, as many of our family and friends thought it was.