A visit to the Oxford Food Hub
At hampers.com, we work closely with our local Oxford Food Hub, donating products from our hampers, which are either getting close to their best before date or are being discontinued. Rather than simply putting any foods in to the bin, we collaborate with the Oxford Food Hub to ensure these great quality items can be shared amongst those who need them.
Following a visit to Oxford Food Bank from our team, read on to learn more about how hampers.com are committed to reducing food waste and our work to support the supply of items to local food banks.
What hampers.com do to reduce food waste
Sustainability is at the heart of what we do. There is only one planet and as a carbon neutral business, working toward B-corp status, we are passionate about doing our bit to combat global warming and acting responsibly, when it comes to recycling and also reducing food waste.
Unfortunately, we do have items that are at risk of going out of date before they are sent out as part of one our special gift hampers. To minimise this happening, we order carefully, control stock meticulously and follow tight product rotation.
When we do have short-dated items, our warehouse team will itemise those products and palletise them ready for collection, by the Oxford Food Hub.
Last year, we contributed to £1.5 million (or 36,850 kg) of food donated to The Oxford Food Hub, who distribute the stock to local food banks.
Did you know….? The UK generated 222.2 million tonnes of total waste in 2018, with England responsible for 84% of the UK total.
Working with the Oxford Food Hub
Collaborating with The Oxford Food Hub is an important part of our business model, as proposed by managing director, Patrick.
Recently, our very own Marketing Executive, Ella, visited The Oxford Food Hub to learn about what they do and who they help. She spoke with CEO, Emily, and Marketing Manager, Spencer, and met important volunteers, Penny and Rosemary.
The Oxford Food Hub developed from the kindness of the two founders, David Cairns and Robin Aitken, who initially visited local supermarkets using their own money to buy low-cost food and donating it to the homeless. It was originally founded as Oxford Food Bank in 2009.
Today, the food hub has grown to employ four permanent staff, alongside 100 volunteers and a fleet of six vans to help with collection and distribution.
Amazingly, The Oxford Food Hub supports 195 charities around Oxfordshire. It’s great work but also eye opening to understand the amount of charities and people who need support to alleviate food poverty.
In recent times, roughly five new charities register every month to be supported. They are not only those charities supporting the homeless, but also those providing warm spaces for older people, those who run children’s centres and, even, pre-schools.
As well as donations from hampers.com, The Oxford Food Hub operates at festivals to collect unused food. They also receive grants to buy staples; plus local people donate extra fruit and vegetables that they have grown in their own gardens.
It’s great to hear of so many different people and organisations working together.
What happens to all of the food?
With 200 deliveries a week being made, as much food as possible is distributed to food banks and reaches those who need it most.
Any products which have ‘best before dates’ can be used, but they are strict about ‘used by’, of course.
However, food which can’t be distributed is not wasted. It is used in one of three ways: 1) anything fresh and suitable is added to ‘pig bins’ and used by a local farmer, 2) anything not considered suitable or containing alcohol can be taken by the volunteers or 3) anything left over is turned into agrofuel.
The Oxford Food Hub…in numbers
– Delivering 200 deliveries a week
– Receiving 6-10 collections a day
– Running for 15 years
– Supporting 195 charities
– Saving 5 tonnes of CO2 every day
– Operating for free
We are really proud of our collaboration with the Oxford Food Hub. If you would like to learn more about how you can get involved, do visit: https://oxfordfoodhub.org/getting-involved/.
You can volunteer, donate food, donate funds or organise fundraising in their honour.
If you have any questions about food waste or donations, please get in touch with the Oxford Food Hub directly or contact [email protected].