Shoppers in Belfast can now donate food items to help people in their community each time they visit their local Tesco store.
A new collection point for the Belfast Foodbank, in the FareShare network has been set up at the Belfast store. It comes as Tesco is installing donation points at every one of its large stores in the UK to help food charities in their vital work.
The new donation point means that shoppers can drop off donations of long-life food whenever they are in store, with Tesco topping up customer donations by an additional 20% in the form of a cash donation to the charity.
The customer donations will help Fareshare in its efforts to support people in Belfast with regular donations needed more than ever due to the extra pressure placed on the charity by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Tesco previously had food donation points at more than 500 stores, but with the installation of new units it will now have a donation point for either a Trussell Trust food bank, or for food redistribution charity FareShare at every one of its 800-plus large stores in the UK.
By looking at the donation point, customers will be able to see which food items their local charity needs most.
Declan McKillop, Development Manager at FareShare Northern Ireland, said: “Tesco is really leading the way by enabling their customers to donate food to local vulnerable communities via collection points in their stores. By introducing even more Permanent Collection Points for FareShare in stores across the UK, there are more opportunities for Tesco customers to make a donation of a food item where they are able to. In the last year, generous Tesco customers donated the equivalent of one million meals to FareShare, and I’d like to thank every single person for their support.
“The store cupboard essential items donated through the collection points, such as tinned meat, fish and pasta, are always needed. Those donations mean that we have a consistent supply of food, which we have been able to redistribute to our network of charities and community organisations supporting those most in need.”
Tesco’s Head of Community Claire de Silva said: “Covid-19 has placed huge demands on food charities. FareShare has been supporting 12,000 frontline charity and community groups, while food banks in the Trussell Trust network provided a record 1.2 million food parcels during the first six months of the pandemic.
“We know that our customers want to help and by installing the new donation points it means all our customers can now easily donate food year-round.”
Shoppers who are unable to make food donations in store can give their support to the two food charities in other ways. They can donate their Tesco Clubcard points to the Trussell Trust and FareShare through the Clubcard website, or they can donate directly to the charities at www.trusselltrust.org or www.fareshare.org.uk