Did you know that the average family of four wastes £800 of food a year*? People and businesses are becoming more aware of food waste, but it can often be a hard thing to avoid. 

Enter community fridgean easy way to share good food that would otherwise go to waste. A community fridge is a space where anyone who lives nearby can exchange surplus food, including businesses. 

We coordinate the world’s only and biggest Community Fridge Network with over 130 members (95 are up and running, and the rest are setting up). We offer free support to groups across the country to set up their community fridge and are providing a comprehensive guide, design assets, health and safety templates and a free fridge.  

Follow the campaign on social media with the hashtag #CommunityFridge 

Creating resilient communities

We trialled our first community fridge in 2016. Since then, community fridges have taken root across the UK helping thousands connect to their neighbours, access nutritious food, save money and reduce waste.  

The difference made

With each fridge sharing one to four tonnes of food per month, the collective impact of the Community Fridge Network is huge. Over 780 tonnes of surplus food are redistributed annuallyThat’s over 390,000 meals! 

What’s more important though, is the stories that we hear from the communities. The fridge brings people together, it addresses social isolation and provides people the opportunity to access healthy food, try something new, and helps families to save money. 

A fridge is often so much more than a fridge. It can also provide an opportunity for you to meet new peopletry new foods as well as signposting you to other services and activities such as cooking workshops, allotments, clothes swaps… you name it. 

Retailers redistributing surplus food across the network include Tesco, Sainsbury's, Morrisons, Waitrose, Co-op, Costa, Marks & SpencerRiverford Organic, Spar, and many local businesses. 

Read and download the full impact report for 2019. 

Visit your local community fridge

In light of COVID-19, some of the community fridges listed below are closing temporarily to keep their communities safe. If you are planning to visit a fridge, please give them a call to check when/if they are open.

community fridge can be accessed by anyone in the community, and anyone can give to or take food from the fridge! There are some rules on what you can and cannot put in the fridge (for health and safety reasons), so do check this when you visit or give them a call to find out more. 

Use the map below to find your nearest community fridge and get in touch directly with the organisers to get involved. A few ways you can support your community fridge: 

  • Spread the word with the hashtag #CommunityFridge. 
  • Share surplus food that you’re not going to use, perhaps you’re a gardener or just about to move house 
  • Try something new, take food from the fridge 
  • Volunteer your time to support your local community fridge – you can help collect surplus food from shops, come up with plans for fundraising, promote the initiative locally or develop their activities! 

This map is ever changing. We keep it up to date as often as we can but please contact the local organisers for further information. 

 

You can set up your own community fridge!

Most community fridges are started by one person who felt and knew they could make a difference in their area. If this sounds like you, get in touch at [email protected] to find out how to get started. 

You can also join the open community fridge Facebook group here.

Thanks to The National Lottery Community Fund for support to grow the Community Fridge Network, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation for support in making The Community Fridge Film, and thanks to Bosch, Morrison's Foundation, Rotschild Foundation, Climate Challenge Fund, Samsung, North London Waste Authority, Liebherr and Sainsbury’s for their ongoing support. 

References 

*WRAP Love Food Hate Waste website (https://www.lovefoodhatewaste.com/article/whats-it-me, as of May 2020