Food waste is a big issue, especially in South Africa where there are so many hungry people and underserved charities so one woman is changing everything…
Sell-by dates on food are what shops go by when restocking the shelves. Some stores will mark down the price on the last day of the sell-by date and then if they don’t get sold, bin it… Yes, that is correct, food gets sent to landfill even if it is perfectly fine because of sell-by dates.
In South Africa, wasting food in such a manner is gutwrenching. We have millions of people living below the poverty line, going to bed hungry at night. There are charities that struggle to stay open and are in desperate need of food to help feed the needy.
NOSH food rescue NPC was started to be the middleman between retail food waste and the people of South Africa in need of food. Currently, the organisation works on a small scale in the Johannesburg area but hopes to grow and spread across the country, saving food and people in one swoop.
“We facilitate collection of potential food waste and affect distribution to our network of soup kitchens, shelters and feeding schemes.”
“We transform produce which would otherwise have gone to landfill into delicious, nutritious meals and value-added products.”
NOSH has partnered with a number of retail stores, collecting food that would have ended up in the trash. The food is then used in their soup kitchen or redistributed to a number of organisations. Currently, food is sent to organisations in the North-West suburbs, the West Rand and Vereeniging.
They have an amazing volunteer programme which sees people coming from all over the globe to help sort through food, work on redistribution and help with the development of the programme to work on expanding. People can also volunteer to lobby their local retail stores to donate their food surplus to the cause.
“We can’t get around to every retailer or shop ourselves yet, so we would love you to help us build the relationships with your local stores so we can extend the Food Rescue network.”
The organisation also works hand-in-hand with high school kids, helping them get their community service hours. The end goal for the organisation is to become a fully-fledged hospitality skills centre. They wish to have a space that offers training to waiters, chefs, urban food gardeners and even offer access to business skills.
NOSH has provided over 38,000 meals to soup kitchens and feeding schemes over the past 3 years. According to the Johannesburg City council, 27% of people in Johannesburg are food insecure and this rises to 47% in inner-city environments.
You can find out more about NOSH food rescue on their Facebook page here.