Booker has teamed up with food redistribution charity FareShare and free sharing app OLIO to provide food to vulnerable people across the UK and to help reduce food waste.
The wholesaler will roll out the food redistribution scheme across its branches nationwide after a successful trial period that launched in 11 of its branches and two distribution centres in January 2021.
Through the FareShare Go programme, Booker sites are matched with charities and community groups in the local area that collect the items and turn that into food parcels or hot meals for the people they support.
The programme is currently live in more than 100 Booker branches and together the three organisations have redistributed more than 250,000 meals.
In addition, OLIO’s Food Waste Heroes will also be able to collect food directly from Booker, which will then be added to its app for people in the local area to collect.
Catherine Marston, Sustainability Manager at Booker, said: “Over the past year we have donated the equivalent of over six million meals to local charities and good causes and this will really help us build upon this success.”
FareShare organisations will make the majority of collections from Booker sites, typically five days out of the week, while OLIO Food Waste Heroes are lined up to collect on days when charities can’t.
Lindsay Boswell, chief executive at FareShare, said: “We received wonderful feedback from the teams that took part in the trial and we’re thrilled that we’re now able to support Booker to get even more food to people in need across the country.
“Demand for FareShare food has more than doubled since the start of the pandemic, and we are delivering upwards of two million meals per week to those in need, so this food is needed now more than ever.”
Tessa Clarke, Co-Founder and Chief Executive at OLIO, added: “Schemes like this are instrumental in helping tackle food wastage across our communities so we are very proud to be involved.”