TESCO is to hold an extra summer food collection to support the Trussell Trust and FareShare as they respond to an increased demand for food in the wake of the pandemic, and stores in South Wales are taking part.
From August 20 to 22 special donation points will be put up at every Tesco Superstore and Extra store, with customers being asked to donate essential items of long-life food. Tesco will top up all customer donations with an additional 20% donation in cash to the two charities.
The collection has been organised in direct response to the extra pressures placed on the food banks and community groups which FareShare and the Trussell Trust are supporting during the COVID-19 pandemic. FareShare has seen its highest ever demand for food from the thousands of local charities and community groups it supports, whilst the Trussell Trust has seen need at food banks in its network soar by more than 80%.
Tesco Director David Page said: “This is a really challenging time for the two charities because of the big rise in demand on them for food. Our customers have responded with incredible generosity to our food collections in the past, donating more than 39m meals. I hope they will give generously again because there are a lot of people that need a helping hand at the moment and this appeal will make a real difference to them.”
Kate Gronow, the Trussell Trust’s area manager for South Wales, said: “Over the last few months, we’ve been truly humbled to see how much people in South Wales are willing to give and the difference this can make when someone is in crisis. As we look to the coming months, more people than ever are likely to need to use a food bank. This isn’t right. Everyone should be able to afford their own food. Every donation made during Tesco’s summer food collection will help food banks in our network provide the best possible emergency help to people referred at an uncertain time.”
Sarah Germain, FareShare’s project manager for South Wales added: “Applications from charities and community groups needing vital food supplies have tripled since the start of the lockdown. The crisis is far from over and we are incredibly thankful to Tesco for running this emergency food collection as it will ensure we can continue to support frontline charities helping to feed those who are most vulnerable right now.”
The two food charities have already been aided by Tesco as part of a £30m package of community support in response to the pandemic. That package included donations of surplus food with a value of £9m through FareShare, a £15m donation of extra food to the two charities and £1m between them to help them with their increased running costs.
The extra summer food collection is in addition to the pre-Christmas Tesco Food Collection Tesco holds annually for FareShare and the Trussell Trust in November. It will take place from store opening on Thursday, August 20, to store closing on Saturday, August 22.