Lidl Ireland and Crosscare Food Bank Partner in Ireland’s First Mobile Food Bank

Lidl Ireland and the Crosscare Dublin Food Bank – Ireland’s only established food bank – announced details of a partnership launching Ireland’s first Mobile Food Bank.

The mobile foodbank collects surplus food and non-food product on a daily basis from each of the participating Lidl stores in Ballyfermot; Pottery Road; Clondalkin; Walkinstown; Greenhills; Nutgrove; Stillorgan and Rathfarnham and distribute the product initially to the 70 charities[1] working with those most in need, based in each of the localities. The remaining food will returned to the three Crosscare Community Cafés catering for over 600 people on a daily basis and via a Meals-on-Wheels service for those housebound.

As well as the surplus food product, Lidl is providing a refrigerated van; motor insurance and the required fuel with Crosscare manning the service with a team of trained volunteers.

Over 10% of people in Ireland are affected by food poverty, which means that they simply cannot afford to provide themselves and their families with the recommended daily amounts of food. People finding themselves at risk of food poverty include those living alone; families on low incomes; single parents and families with three of more children.[2]

Established over seventy years ago and running the food bank for over thirty years, Crosscare diverts over 550 tonnes of food from landfill and the new partnership with Lidl will result in an additional 300 tonnes of food being redistributed via their network to those most in need, almost doubling the waste saved from landfill.

Throughout the process Lidl and Crosscare will maintain the cold chain to ensure that the integrity of the food supplied is intact. Any food that isn’t donated to a local charity or used in the Community Cafés will be frozen to prevent waste. Food that will be supplied as part of the partnership include meat & poultry; fruit and vegetables; bread & bakery and some ambient lines.

Speaking at the launch, Michael McDonagh, Senior Manager for Crosscare Food Services said, “There has never been a greater need for our services which helps feed those affected by food poverty than in the current economic climate. We help people from all walks of life that have found themselves unable to put food on the table for themselves and their families and this partnership will thankfully be able to help lots more people.”

Caitriona McCarry, PR & Marketing, Lidl, said, “This is the first time a retailer in Ireland has ever established a Mobile Food Bank, taking food that is perfectly edible but may not meet the requirements for sale, and bringing it directly from the store to those most in need right across Dublin. We are mindful to ensure the health and safety aspects of this partnership and all the participating store managers have been trained to ensure that the cold chain of the surplus food donated is maintained. All aspects of the system will be monitored to ensure that the project is a great success and benefits those affected by food poverty in Ireland.”

All the participating stores have been issued with a Crosscare Food Bank AHT chilled cabinet. The refrigerated cabinet will be used to collect all surplus food products that have been removed from sale.

[1] Charities include St Vincent de Paul; Simon; Focus Ireland etc.

[2] Constructing a Food Poverty Indicator for Ireland, Department of Social Protection, 2012

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