As part of its ‘Chef for a Day’ campaign, wholesaler Bidfood recently volunteered five of its development chef team to not-for-profit organisations and charities across the UK to give helpers and cooks inspiration on how to be create adaptable and nutritious recipes on a low budget, and make the most of short-dated stock donated by the charity, FareShare.
The Bidfood chefs hosted skills sessions and cookery demonstrations in Manchester, Glasgow, West Berkshire, East Midlands and Birmingham and demonstrated buffet ideas for more than 100 people from low-income households, as well as those in rehabilitation, with meals ranging from risottos and winter stews, to vegan breakfast bowls and Indian treats. Support was also given to build the skills of service users to help them feel more confident to cook for themselves in their own home.
According to WRAP figures it’s estimated that 1.9 million tonnes of food is thrown away each year and 250,000 tonnes of this food is still perfectly edible and enjoyable. Not only does wasted food contribute to greenhouse gases, but with 8.4 million people in the UK struggling to afford to eat, the redistribution of unwanted food is necessary.
Bidfood has recognised this issue and has a long-standing partnership with FareShare, a food waste charity that redistributes food from over-production or food with a short sell-by date. Together, they are able to redistribute food to those who need it most.
Lindsay Boswell, chief executive of FareShare, said: “Bidfood has been providing surplus food to FareShare for almost two years. In the last year alone, the company provided a staggering 40,000 meals, which were redistributed to people in need via our nationwide network of 10,000 charities and community groups.”
Speaking about the ‘Chef for a Day’ campaign, Martin Eshelby, Bidfood development chef, said: “There are so many great charities or non-profit organisations out there who regularly support and feed people in need amongst their local communities. We wanted to organise a campaign to support these dedicated people by sharing our skills and knowledge to teach them how to be more innovative when it comes to creating delicious and nutritious meals from food bank donations.”