Food Connect A zero emissions service to take good food further Food Connect aims to redistribute food that is perfectly good to eat but would otherwise go to waste. We are using two e-cargo bikes and an e-van to trial the zero-emissions service in Milton Keynes. COVID-19 has highlighted food insecurity for millions of vulnerable individuals and households across the country. Research by Hubbub in April found that 1 in 5 people in Britain were worried about access to free food. During the COVID-19 lockdown, the service is partnering with FareShare and SOFEA to deliver surplus food parcels to vulnerable households. After lockdown, the fleet will keep on delivering great food to Community Fridges and a super-efficient redistribution service to retailers. Each year, the Community Fridge Network of over 95 fridges redistributes perishable surplus food equivalent to 390,000 meals, benefitting 62,000 people. One of the biggest challenges that the Community Fridge Network faces is relying on volunteers to collect surplus food. At times these collections may be late at night, or more than a volunteer can carry. Food Connect will help bridge the ‘final mile’ between food retailers and the community. The term 'final mile' refers to the last leg of the supply chain that is often inefficient. In the case of surplus food, it relates to the challenge in getting surplus food redistributed to individuals or places like community fridges after it has left the supermarket or business. Supporting community groups and reducing air pollution The service will also facilitate community groups in becoming more resilient and self-sufficient by removing dependency on fossil fuels or paying volunteer expenses. All drivers and riders will be paid a salary, and our aim is to develop the service as a local enterprise capable of generating income. Not only will Food Connect reduce food waste, but it is also creating less air pollution. Hubbub research found that 62% of Brits have noticed cleaner air as a result of lockdown and they would like to see this continue long-term. The growing use of electric vehicles will help to reduce urban air pollution, and reduce the risks faced by people with existing health problems, potentially also helping to reduce the most severe impact of COVID-19. Keen to get involved? If you live in Milton Keynes and want to refer someone to receive a parcel or help with the project locally, please get in touch below. I WANT TO HELP FOOD CONNECT If you’re a business based in Milton Keynes, you can get involved by giving surplus food, sponsoring a bike or providing resources. I WANT TO SUPPORT FOOD CONNECT If you're not based in Milton Keynes, you can still be involved with saving great food from going to waste. Check out our Community Fridge Network and see if you have one near you! FIND A FRIDGE Food Connect is brought to you by Hubbub with thanks to CAF Venturesome, The National Lottery Fund, Liebherr, Milton Keynes Council and FareShare.