The Battersea Canteen will provide free meals for local people on a low income or in need of company. Meals will be put together using surplus food that would otherwise have been thrown away by local shops and markets and will be cooked by volunteers.
It’s estimated that 89m tonnes of food are wasted every year in the EU, with the UK cited as the worst offender accounting for over 12m tonnes. Industrialised countries’ combined waste amounts to approximately 222 million tonnes of food, almost as much as the entire net food production of sub-Saharan Africa. Implications are not just social or economic, the global carbon footprint of wasted food has been estimated as more than twice the total greenhouse gas emissions of all road transportation in the US in 2010.*
Brixton People’s Kitchen, managed by Be Enriched, aims to be as green as possible and will collect food on a bike cart in order to reduce their carbon footprint.
Kemi Akinola, CEO of Be Enriched says: “It’s hard to believe how much food is wasted. Something has to be done – often something with only a tiny mark on it is thrown away. It’s not just about reducing food waste for us though, we want to strengthen communities by bringing them together through food. Anyone is welcome to get involved and help cook – it’s also a great opportunity to make new friends or learn a new skill.”
Approximately 19.3 million people in the UK experienced poverty between 2010 and 2013** and 51% of all people aged 75 and over live alone***
Dickie Bielenberg, director and founder of London Cooking Project says: “Too many people in the UK have to eat alone or eat badly due to tight budgets. The doors are always open at our kitchen but this is a real opportunity to bring the local community together, whilst showing people it’s entirely possible to eat healthily and be sustainable for very little cost.”
In order to help fund The Battersea Canteen, a series of supper clubs will take place at London Cooking Project’s home in Battersea, with the inaugural event on Tuesday 17th November.
Menus will be put together a day or two before with the volunteer Head Chef creating a variety of dishes from an unexpected assortment of vegetables.