May is Hunger Month in South Africa and Tru-Cape continues to support the drive to feed hungry people

Leading South African fruit marketer Tru-Cape has once again joined forces with retailer Food Lover’s Market to help combat hunger in the country.

Food Lover's Market South Africa

Along with other dedicated partners, the group is supporting a campaign to provide free meals to disadvantaged South Africans as we head to World Hunger Day at the end of May.

The beneficiary is Food Forward SA and the campaign started at the beginning of May.

Food Lover’s Market said it had has already secured 2m meals through sponsorship partners this year, while Tru-Cape said it had made a ”generous financial contribution” to help kick-start the campaign.

During May, shoppers can also voluntarily purchase a meal at only 47 cents at any Food Lover’s Market checkouts to help make a difference for fellow South Africans.

It is estimated that 30m individuals in South Africa are currently suffering from food insecurity. Food Forward SA said it was dedicated to reducing food insecurity in South Africa by efficiently distributing quality food to those in need.

Roelf Pienaar, managing director of Tru-Cape, said food security and a lack of access to healthy food were stark realities for many South Africans.

“Many South Africans don’t have access to a plate of food or go to bed with an empty stomach,” he said. ”We are committed to every South African’s basic and constitutional right to a healthy meal. From our side, it is a small contribution to help alleviate hunger, an issue close to our hearts.”  

According to Andy du Plessis, managing director of Food Forward SA, about 50 per cent of South Africans go to bed hungry, and 27 per cent of children younger than five are malnourished.

South Africa is currently preparing for a national election at the end of May and observers have said the high rate of hunger in the country also marked 30 years since the democratic government came into power.

This issue, and other problems with infrastructure and service delivery, including corruption, are likely to play on the minds of voters as they head for the polls.

“Food Forward SA increased our tonnages by 325 per cent over the past five years,” said Du Plessis.

“The cost per meal decreased from 85 cents in 2020 to only 47 cents this year, making food banking the most cost-efficient option to combat hunger,” he explained, adding that food waste was among the largest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions.

“In South Africa, more than 10m tonnes of food are lost or wasted annually, costing the economy R64bn a year. If we can recover it, we can address the problem of food security.”

Tru-Cape is also involved in several Western Cape communities through financial donations or sponsorships.

“We donate apples and pears to crèches and schools in our production areas and beyond,” said Pienaar.

The apple and pear exporter also aims to limit food waste and its carbon footprint to the minimum, said Henk Griessel, quality assurance manager at Tru-Cape.

“Tru-Cape is fully committed to sustainability,” he said. ”Food waste in fruit is almost negligible because most of our fruit is either used for juice production or as cattle feed.”