Aldi has begun donating surplus food directly to charities in Yorkshire, London, the North East, and the South East as part of a new trial with community engagement platform, Neighbourly.
The UK’s fastest-growing supermarket has paired up 24 of its stores with local groups that are now collecting surplus food up to five days a week.
Each store is donating perishable items such as fresh fruit and veg and baked goods, as well as non-perishable items. The trial will continue until the spring, with a view to rolling it out across Aldi’s entire store estate.
Last year the supermarket donated two million meals to charity and expects to increase this by 50 per cent if the trial is extended to its 827 stores.
Fritz Walleczek, managing director of corporate responsibility at Aldi UK and Ireland, said: “This partnership is enabling us to be even more efficient in how we distribute surplus stock, while supporting a vast range of causes, from local schools to community centres and local food banks.
“Our aim is for fresh, healthy food to be accessible for everyone, and Neighbourly are helping us to extend this commitment beyond our affordable range of fresh products.”
Steve Butterworth, chief executive of Neighbourly, added: "Food surplus is a challenge Aldi is committed to playing its part to address. This approach is critical to ensure surplus food finds its way easily to the good causes supporting those communities that need it most."
Aldi has worked with Fareshare and Company Shop since 2012 and is now also partnering with Neighbourly to explore the benefits of more direct relationships within the communities its stores serve.
In other efforts to reduce food waste, the discounter has not sent any waste to landfill since 2014, and has also pledged to reduce operational food waste by 50 per cent by 2030 as part of the Friends of Champions 12.3 network.