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King Charles spearheads food redistribution drive

Businesses have committed to collaborate more closely to scale up redistribution of surplus food under a new project championed by King Charles.

The Coronation Food Project is designed to bridge the gap between food waste and food need. It plans to build on the food industry’s existing initiatives to redistribute surplus food through the creation of up to eight ‘coronation food hubs’ distributed across the UK.

Each hub will have lorries to collect food directly from the food industry; capacity to store tonnes of chilled, frozen and ambient food; kitchens and processing units to turn surplus ingredients into meals; and vans and drivers to get food to thousands of charities and community groups. The hubs will also host facilities to train and support people into work. 

The UK-wide project marks the King’s 75th birthday. It will be coordinated by his charitable fund and delivered in partnership with FareShare across the UK and The Felix Project in London.

A key element of the project is FareShare’s Alliance Manufacturing programme, which brings together food retailers, manufacturers and other organisations to share their surplus, underutilised and donated resources in all forms – food, packaging, labour hours, and factory and distribution capacity.

The idea is that new food sources can be created outside of current, business-specific redistribution networks by combining disparate resources across multiple businesses along all parts of the supply chain.

Signatories to a Coronation Food Project pledge, that include the likes of Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Nestle and Cranswick, commit to “put competitive differences aside to actively work together across industry and charities alike, sharing resources and learning to maximise our combined impact to reduce waste across the entire UK food supply chain”.