Unsold supermarket food turned into meals at Diss playschool
- Credit: Community Food Connection Scheme
A playschool in Diss has been providing healthy meals to youngsters thanks to donations of unsold food from Tesco.
Merryfields Playschool is just one of scores of community groups and charities in Norfolk benefitting from surplus food donations through Tesco's Community Food Connection scheme.
It is a charitable preschool that is partly government-funded and partly fee-paying. However, many parents cannot afford to contribute, so the school relies on food collections from Tesco to ensure that all of the children get nutritious meals.
The playschool staff use the ingredients collected from the store to make meals, and then anything leftover is packaged into food parcels that can be shared with parents that need a little extra help.
The food is also used to help children learn cooking and baking skills, or even repurposed for sensory play.
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Sharon Everett, playschool manager said the donated food helped to make a real difference.
'The Community Food Connection Scheme is a lifeline for us,' she said. 'We pick up from Tesco in Diss each week and the staff there are fantastic – they really try to find out what types of food are helpful to us and go out of their way to provide them.
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'Not a single bit of donated food goes to waste as we can use it in so many different ways, all designed to benefit the children. Some of their parents have been through some difficult times and being able to provide a child with a hot meal and some extra food to take home is a relief for everyone.'
Tesco Community Food Connection is the largest supermarket food redistribution scheme in the UK – providing around 350,000 meals worth of surplus food to charities and community groups each week.
If you are a group that could benefit visit www.fareshare.org.uk/fareshare-go to find out more.