East Midlands Railway donates food to local social enterprise ‘Food Works’ this Christmas

Friday, 20 December 2019

  • Sheffield's leading force in the fight against food waste this Christmas
  • Unused food from Sheffield to London services donated to local social enterprise throughout the year, including Christmas Eve
  • ‘Food works’ run cafe's, catering, events, green box scheme and shareholders market

East Midlands Railway will be donating unused food from its Sheffield to London services throughout Christmas, helping to support people in Sheffield. EMR donates food including sausages, eggs, rolls and muffins to ‘Food Works’, which aims to reduce unnecessary waste by cooking good quality, unused food to feed local people.

Throughout December and over the Christmas period, the UK will throw away more than 4 million tonnes of perfectly edible food, which is 30% of the UK’s annual total volume!

The project brings people together from the local community and most importantly, stops people going hungry over Christmas. The unused food would otherwise go to landfill sites and so the donations are good for the environment as well as well as helping EMR to support a local community venture, which is especially important at this time of year.

The Food Works run cafes, catering services for weddings and events, including hosting Christmas dinners and creating Christmas food hampers. Their offering also includes visiting local schools and educating children on the importance of a nutritional, balanced diet.

Debbie Pye, Development Manager for East Midlands Railway, said: “We're very proud to have been involved with the Food Works for the last 3 years and have even used them to cater for our internal conferences. Although our breakfasts are very popular with customers travelling between Sheffield and London, like any company serving food, we do have leftovers that previously were being sent to landfill.

"We found out about Food Works in Sheffield by word of mouth and quickly arranged to meet up with the team. I was blown away right from the start by what a great concept it is. It really is a win-win for everyone involved and we’re really pleased to be working with a local community project and supporting a great cause.

“They have gone from strength to strength and are an inspirational business who put the people and planet at the heart of what they do”.

Ashley Cooke, Operations Manager for Food Works Sheffield, said: “We are a non-profit social enterprise working for a world where food is produced and used sustainably.

“Sheffield is a leading force in the fight against food waste, saving over a tonne of food per day. We collect, upcycle and redistribute food in a number of ways, all designed to minimise waste and maximise impact.

“We have been working with East Midlands Railway for the past 3 years and last month alone (November 2019), we intercepted over 170kg of surplus food from EMR (the equivalent of 425 meals - based on WRAP's guideline 400g per meal conversion) including items such as eggs, bread, crisps and meat including bacon, sausages and black pudding.

“Keep up the good work East Midlands Railway and Food Works Sheffield!”

Thing to note in order to avoid unnecessary food waste at home this Christmas remember to follow the tips below:

  1. Buy only what you can use
  2. Use what you have and make sure you eat leftovers (there's some great zero waste recipes out there)
  3. Know the difference between use by and best before dates
  4. Share what you can't use
  5. Store food correctly

For more information visit: https://thefoodworks.org/