Surplus food donations from Tesco delivers 2 million meals for Irish charities and support groups
13 October 2016: Tesco Ireland’s innovative surplus food donations programme has redistributed over two million meals to 195 charities and support groups since its launch in July 2014. This equates to over 20,000 meals donated to causes every week.
At present 109 of Tesco’s 148 Irish stores (73%) support local good causes with surplus food donations, with the retailer planning to introduce their programme into all of its Irish stores by the end of 2016. With 2 million meals redistributed to date, equating to over 1000 tonnes of food, Tesco is encouraging more good causes across Ireland to sign up and take part in this initiative.
Charities that have benefited to date range from local community centres, addiction rehabilitation services, homelessness charities, women’s refuges, elderly support centres, children and youth organisations, to name but a few.
This partnership is also having a knock on positive impact on the environment saving over 3,200 tonnes of CO2 emissions being released by donating this food instead of processing it as waste.
This is the equivalent of the greenhouse gases emitted by 676 cars in one year or the same CO2 emissions that would be released from 473 homes’ electricity use in one year.
Christine Heffernan, Corporate Affairs Director Tesco Ireland said: “Even in the most efficient retail operations, there will inevitably be surplus food and we are thrilled to be making a valuable contribution to local communities enabling charities to focus on the vital services they provide. Our aim is to achieve full roll out of this partnership to all of our 148 stores by the end of 2016. We encourage any charity that can benefit from this partnership to register via food.cloud. ”
Daisy House Housing Association is one charity that has benefited from the Tesco and FoodCloud partnership and receives surplus food from 17 Tesco stores across Dublin. The housing association helps women who find themselves homeless, providing temporary supported accommodation, as well as personal support programmes for each individual. The idea is to help these women break the cycle of homelessness and move forward to independent sustainable living.
Orla Gilroy, CEO of Daisy House, comments on the powerful impact of this initiative: “We were an early partner of Tesco and FoodCloud and the difference it has made to our residents is terrific! It’s a lot more than just a crate of food; it’s a chance to give a sense of family to a group of women who have been severely traumatised. It enables them to sit together at a table over a plate of food. Many of them may have never had any sense of family life before. We’ve seen strong friendships develop as they swop and share food and recipes. It’s great to come into the centre after a delivery and hear the laughter in the room, not only does this service assist in terms of cost, but it’s brought our residents whether new or long term together creating lifelong bonds.”
Iseult Ward, Co-founder and CEO of FoodCloud, commented on the success of the partnership: “Tesco Ireland were FoodCloud’s first national retail partner and in the last 2 years we have worked with them to redistribute over 2 million meals to 195 charities across Ireland. We are delighted to now celebrate this significant milestone. Tesco have been an incredible support for FoodCloud and have enabled us to expand our solution and have a positive impact in communities across Ireland.’
Tesco and FoodCloud are calling on charities and community groups from across the country, which could benefit from receiving surplus quality food products, to find out more about signing up on food.cloud