Food redistribution charity FareShare has received £1 million from the Scottish to help people struggling with food insecurity to deal with additional pressures caused by Brexit.
The money will help provide for thousands of vulnerable people across Scotland, with the food supplied by Asda at cost price, which has furnished FareShare’s warehouses with an additional 30 per cent more food.
The funding will allow FareShare to provide additional support to organisations like community cafes, food parcel providers and holiday clubs that provide essential assistance for people struggling to afford healthy meals.
It will also enable the charity to reach more remote areas of the country such the Scottish Highlands.
Gillian Kynoch, head of FareShare in Scotland said: “Working closely with our partner Asda, we will be able to reach more low income and vulnerable people through our network of frontline organisations – such as food banks, community centres and children’s after school clubs.
“The funding will be used to supplement stocks of available surplus food with additional essential supplies and we welcome Asda and the Scottish Government’s continued support in helping us ensure good food gets onto the plates of people who need it most.”
The extra funding comes at a time when Britain is gearing up for big changes in its food and farming industry ahead of Brexit, while Brexit uncertainty has already affected businesses across the country.
Communities secretary Aileen Campbell said: “This additional £1 million was provided to help protect people and organisations across Scotland from the impact of Brexit and ensure support goes to those who are most at risk.
“This is in addition to the £3.5 million we are spending to tackle food insecurity this year. Despite the continued Brexit uncertainty we are facing, we will continue to do all we can to tackle poverty head on.”
Asda will provide staple ambient and frozen foods to FareShare’s warehouses at cost price, meaning the retailer doesn’t make a profit, as well supplying them with surplus food for free.
In 2018 Asda donated 72.2 tonnes of good quality, surplus food to FareShare in Scotland, the equivalent of 170,716 meals. The retailer is also donating £20m to FareShare and the Trussell Trust via the Fight Hunger Create Change partnership, which aims to support one million people in poverty across the UK.
So far, 108 additional tonnes of food have been delivered to FareShare’s four warehouses in Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh and Glasgow, with many more pallets being delivered in January to help people in need.
By purchasing food at cost price, FareShare has been able to distribute 30 pert cent more food than it otherwise would have been able to.
Stephi Brett-Lee, Asda’s senior director for community said: “We’re really proud of our partnership with FareShare and, through this initiative, we are able to support the charity to ensure thousands of vulnerable people in communities across Scotland don’t go hungry this winter.
“We know our customers and colleagues are passionate about us tackling food insecurity and this scheme is helping us to do that right in the heart of our local communities, on top of the existing work in our Fight Hunger Create Change partnership to increase food donations and tackle the root causes of poverty.”