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Student project for reducing food waste wins Tesco backing

Camille Chatakondu

Student - Kings College London

15 Jun 2017

Tesco is supporting entrepreneurial Enactus students from King’s College London in helping reduce food waste.

Enactus is a community of students, academics and business leaders who work together to create entrepreneurial solutions to achieve social action. Each university Enactus team works with the community, to help improve the lives of people in need.

Tackling food waste

Our aim was to tackle problems we’d identified, that affected our local communityWe decided that we wanted to find ways of reducing food waste. Our Enactus project is called Branched. 

We came up with the idea of Branched Crisps. Our crisps are made from ‘ugly’, ‘wonky’ or ‘unwanted’ fruit and veg taken from New Covent Garden Market in London. This produce has a greater potential to be left or wasted because of the way it looks. Like Tesco, we don't want to see good food go to waste. We take the leftover produce and transform it into tasty baked crisps. 

The process is very simple, slicing the fruit into thin slices, seasoning with flavours such as paprika or cinnamon, baked, then packaged. The product is sold at local events – most recently South East Festival. All profits are invested back into the project, helping to cover the cost of training and ingredients.

Community benefits

Since the launch of the project we’ve been able to tackle another problem, that of refugees who cannot find employment. We incorporate members of refugee charities into the crisp production process. Our programme gives them: food manufacture experience, food hygiene certification and a vital UK reference. We also teach them English language and business skills.

Tesco supporting entrepreneurs

Tesco is a key business partner for Branched and has helped us throughout the course of our project. We’ve met with members of Tesco’s snack buying team, manufacturing and food waste departments to receive advice and guidance.

We were also invited to present Branched at the Tesco Food Waste Individual Topic Competition (ITC) alongside other food waste projects. We received some great feedback on our project and got the chance for a 1-1 session with a member of the Tesco team. Our project has just won the Tesco ITC award which secures further funding, from Tesco, for Branched.

Thank you Tesco for all your support. We are looking forward to working with you in the future and helping you in your goal to tackle food waste wherever it occurs – from farm to fork.

No time for waste

Supporting projects like this is part of Tesco's ongoing work to tackle food waste wherever it occurs – from farm to fork. Tesco believes that no food that could be eaten should be wasted. That’s why we’ve committed that no food that is safe for human consumption will go to waste from Tesco UK Retail operations by the end of 2017.

Tesco supports entrepreneurs through BackIt

Tesco BackIt gives small food and drink businesses the chance to tell their story and show off their products. BackIt is looking for food waste entrepreneurs to support. For more information go to: backit.tesco.com

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