Supermarket giant Tesco has launched FoodCloud, an innovate online platform which redirects unsold food from stores to thousands of charities and food banks in the UK. It’s part of a wider push across the region to reduce 90m tonnes of EU member state food waste.
Tesco store managers can now use a mobile app to alert charities and food banks about excess food left at the end of the working day.
Food supply organisation FareShare, through their partnership with Tesco, has supplied the supermarket with the necessary infrastructure to allow them to share unsold produce to those who need it the most.
Once store managers confirm the location of the surplus food, charities are able to confirm they want the food, and will pick it up from the store free of charge. Beneficiaries of this solution will likely include disadvantaged children, the elderly, and people in homeless hostels.
Tesco has launched the initiative after their recent announcement to curb all food waste from their stores, primarily by giving it to those in need. 124 stores across the country will begin using the app. Food from their supply chains and distribution centres will also be eligible for donation.
FoodCloud began distributing unsold food in 2012. In just four years, the platform has donated nearly 900 tonnes of food (close to 2 million meals) and prevented 2,800 tonnes of CO2 emissions in the process. Tesco’s involvement and funding of the project is expected to expand their reach far beyond original estimates.
“We are excited to be launching our store-level solution with Tesco who are demonstrating real leadership and commitment to tackling food waste.” said FareShare chief executive Lindsay Boswell about the initiative. “FareShare FoodCloud is an expansion of our wider work redistributing good quality surplus food to charities and community groups.”
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Photo Credit: Yuichi Shiraishi on Flickr.