More than 2,600 Tesco stores across the UK are taking part in the annual Tesco Food Collection from Thursday 29 November to Saturday 1 December, encouraging shoppers to donate long-life foods to The Trussell Trust and to food redistribution charity FareShare.
More than a quarter of the food given out last year by Trussell Trust foodbanks was donated by Tesco customers and the network across the UK is hoping the supermarket's annual collection will provide the food they need to support people in crisis this Christmas.
From Thursday 29 November to Saturday 1 December more than 2,600 Tesco stores across the UK are taking part in the annual Tesco Food Collection. The drive encourages shoppers to donate long-life foods to The Trussell Trust and to food redistribution charity FareShare.
The food donated to foodbanks in The Trussell Trust's network is given in emergency food parcels to people referred because they cannot afford to feed themselves and their families. Donations by Tesco customers are vital to foodbanks across the UK, and a quarter of the donations to foodbanks by Tesco customers will be made in the next three days.
Emma Revie, Chief Executive at The Trussell Trust said:
“This year is set to be the busiest Christmas for foodbanks in our network ever. Foodbanks across the country will be doing all they can to provide the best possible emergency support so people don't go hungry - but to make sure support is there for everyone."
Food donated to FareShare is distributed to charities and community groups who use it to provide meals for vulnerable groups such as isolated older people and those in homeless shelters.
It is the 11th collection to take place, and Tesco is topping up the value of the food donated by the public by 20%, providing additional funds to support the charities in their work this Christmas.
Volunteers will greet customers with a list of items most needed by the charities, with shoppers encouraged to pick up items to donate.
More than 3.34 million meals were donated to the two food charities by generous Tesco customers last year, and the supermarket is hoping that shoppers will be just as generous this time around.
Tesco UK & Ireland CEO Jason Tarry and his counterparts from FareShare and The Trussell Trust are launching the Food Collection on Thursday at Tesco's Surrey Quays Extra store in London.
“Tesco Food Collection is the UK's biggest Christmas food collection, and at Tesco we are glad to be playing our part in helping people in need this Christmas.
“We know that the items that our customers donate can make a real difference to people who really need that little bit of extra help this year - whether it is a food parcel for someone at a time of crisis, or a hot meal which means that a vulnerable person does not feel lonely this Christmas.
“Once again we are topping up all the customer donations by a further 20%, and I'd encourage our customers to put something extra in their baskets to donate.”
Lindsay Boswell, CEO at FareShare said:
“For charities doing their best to feed some of the most vulnerable over the Christmas period, these donations make a huge difference.”