Organisations unite to get food to people most in need

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  • More people than ever are expected to use a food bank over the next few months 
  • Many food banks across the UK have reported they are running low on essential food supplies 
  • Local charities and community groups across the UK are also in need of vital food supplies
  • Sainsbury’s, British Gas, The Entertainer, Palletforce and XPO Logistics are working together alongside charities, the Trussell Trust and FareShare, to form part of a national solution to distribute food so food banks can continue to support people most in need 
  • The major organisations are working together to ensure this food reaches food banks and community charities as quickly and safely as possible  

Sainsbury’s, The Entertainer, Palletforce, XPO Logistics and British Gas have joined forces to help distribute food to people who need it most. The unprecedented partnership will ensure the Trussell Trust and FareShare can continue to help support people struggling in light of the coronavirus outbreak.

Each organisation1 is playing a vital role in distributing donated food from supermarkets, wholesalers and other food companies to food banks and community charities across the UK.

This innovative partnership comes as the Trussell Trust warns that more people are likely to need a food bank’s help as a result of the outbreak. Food charity FareShare has also seen a steep rise in applications from charities and community groups across the UK who are in need of vital food supplies.

Emma Revie, chief executive of the Trussell Trust said:

“This unique partnership beautifully articulates how society is pulling together in the fight against Covid-19. All these organisations have innovatively adapted their services to support the people most in need during this challenging time, and we are truly grateful that they are helping food banks to continue to provide their essential community service. But ultimately, no one should need to use a food bank. We want to ensure that this community spirit, of supporting one another during difficult times, continues long after this pandemic, so we can create a society where everyone can buy their own food.”

Judith Batchelar, Director of Sainsbury’s Brand said: “Coronavirus has impacted everyone in the UK and it’s important that we support each other now, more than ever. We are committed to supporting our colleagues, customers and our local communities during this crisis. In addition to helping FareShare redistribute food, we are still operating our food donation points in 92% of our stores which support 2,250 food donation partnerships, ensuring food continues to go to people who need it most.”

Lindsay Boswell, CEO at FareShare, said: “This partnership is a testament to the incredible things we can achieve when businesses and the voluntary sector works together with a common purpose. It will enable FareShare to dramatically scale up the amount of food we can distribute right across the UK, enabling us to get more food out to the thousands of charities and community groups, fellow food redistribution organisations, food banks and pantries. It is these groups who, under the most extraordinary circumstances, are doing everything they can to safely deliver food onto the doorsteps of those who are most at risk.”

Matthew Bateman, Managing Director of Field Operations at British Gas, said: “This partnership is a great example of people and businesses coming together to help people who need it most. There are still so many of our people that want to do more to help people in need so by working with the Trussell Trust we can help get food and other essentials to those who really need it. We are in a unique position to help with our nationwide reach and with the third largest fleet in the UK.”

Gavin Williams, managing director, supply chain – UK & Ireland, XPO Logistics, said: “This is a fantastic initiative, a collaboration that really does have a significant positive impact on the groups of people most affected by the pandemic. Our part in the food journey is in creating mixed parcels, palletising and consolidating them, before they reach the food banks. We are proud to be playing a role in expanding and speeding up the supply of essential goods to the front-line doorstep delivery.”

Michael Conroy, CEO at Palletforce said: “Palletforce has helped deliver surplus food for FareShare for a number of years now and we’re privileged to play our part in distributing these food donations. Our members are out there ensuring supply chains keep moving, guaranteeing food and other essential supplies make their way to retailers. We’re pleased that they can assist in distributing critical supplies to food banks supported by FareShare and the Trussell Trust.”

Gary Grant, Founder and Executive Chairman of The Entertainer: “We’re extremely proud to have joined together with other retailers and businesses to support people in need within our communities during this challenging time. It’s both humbling and inspiring to see the outpouring of support for each other across the country and the coming together of retailers and businesses to provide help and support is something we’re delighted we can be part of. We hope the food will bring comfort to people who receive it in these difficult times.”

 

Contact:

Contact the Trussell Trust Press Office at 020 3137 3699 or press@trusselltrust.org

Notes to Editor

1How the partnership will work: 

  1. Sainsbury’s has donated £3 million to FareShareto help distribute food to vulnerable people via partner charities
  2. Supermarkets wholesalers and other food companies identify food available within their supply chain and regional depots that food banks are most in need of
  3. Palletforce* provide trailers to transport food from depots to The Entertainer’s Banbury deport**
  4. XPO Logistics* volunteers will help sort the food for each food bank or community charity and then take them to Palletforcecentral depot in Burton upon Trent
  5. Palletforcewill then ship the food to regional members’ depots in 20 locations around the country (except in NI, where they will deliver directly to food banks)
  6. Once at the regional Palletforcedepots, British Gas volunteers will then deliver the food donations to local food banks in the Trussell Trust network and FareShare’s community charities
  7. Food bank and community charity volunteers will then weigh, sort and prepare this food into emergency food parcels and distribute to people unable to afford food in their local community

*Palletforce and XPO Logistics are donating most of their time and services. The rest of their support is covered by a grant from Sainsbury’s

**Gary Grant, founder of The Entertainer (the fastest-growing, family-owned high street toy retailer in the UK), has donated their depot in Banbury to store the ambient food