Generous Tesco customers help donate 4.3 million meals to feed people in need this Christmas

6 Dec 2013

  • Tesco tops up all donations by 30 per cent resulting in 4.3 million meals donated at the Neighbourhood Food Collection
  • Total number of meals donated by Tesco and Tesco customers over the last year hits 10.2 million meals

Generous Tesco customers have helped to donate a record 4.3million meals for people in need this Christmas, following the Neighbourhood Food Collection which took place in every Tesco store across the UK last weekend. The 4.3 million meals includes the 30 per cent top up by Tesco and equates to 32,000 trolley-loads of food.

The third Neighbourhood Food Collection took place between 29 November - 1 December and was held in partnership with foodbanks charity, the Trussell Trust and food redistribution charity, FareShare. The collection was launched as new research revealed that one in four people have experienced some form of food poverty in the last twelve months.

During the collection, customers were asked to donate non-perishable food items such as long-life milk, cereals and tinned vegetables and fruit. Volunteers from the Trussell Trust, FareShare and the Red Cross joined Tesco colleagues in store to collect donations from kind-hearted customers.

The food, weighing in at 1,800 tonnes, will now be transported to regional FareShare depots and local foodbanks across the country to help people in times of need this Christmas.

The support for the Neighbourhood Food Collection reached record levels across the UK but customers at Park Road Extra in Liverpool proved to be the most generous store for the second collection in a row. The store collected an incredible 22,874 meals, including Tesco’s 30 per cent top up.

The 4.3 million meals donated at this collection takes the total number of meals donated by Tesco customers and topped up by Tesco, to 10.2 million over the last year.

Chris Bush, Tesco UK Managing Director said “The response across the country to the Neighbourhood Food Collection has been amazing and the generosity shown by our customers and our colleagues has surpassed all expectations. I am proud that we are able to use our scale to benefit so many people in need across the UK and it was great to see how communities came together across the three days. Thanks to the work of FareShare and the Trussell Trust, the food donated will really make a huge difference to thousands of people in need this Christmas and beyond.”

Lindsay Boswell, CEO of FareShare said ”In November alone we gave our member charities enough food for more than 920,000 meals. This support becomes even more crucial as the cold weather sets in and people struggle to keep warm and provide enough food for themselves and their families. At a time of such urgent need, we are incredibly grateful to Tesco and their customers for such generosity as we will now be able to provide the 1,000 charities we support with even more food. These charities, like homeless shelters, women’s refuge centres and breakfast clubs for children, will offer a lifeline to some of the poorest people in society this Christmas.”

Chris Mould, Chief Executive, Trussell Trust, said "The generosity of the public in donating so much food to Tesco's Neighbourhood Food Collection clearly shows that ordinary people understand how tough it is for many. Numbers helped by Trussell Trust foodbanks since April have just hit 500,000. Thank goodness the public have been so kind because, as the cold weather starts to bite, there’s no doubt families are going to need it this winter. The donations from Tesco and its customers will transform Christmas for many UK families."

For the first time ever, Tesco also held food collections across central Europe and Ireland at the same time. The collections, which took place in Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia and Ireland, raised just under 500,000 meals, including the top up by Tesco.

In addition to the Neighbourhood Food Collection, Tesco will continue to support FareShare and the Trussell Trust with the roll out of over 200 permanent collection points in large stores next year and will continue to top up all donations by 30 per cent.

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For media enquiries on the Neighbourhood Food Collection please contact Devries SLAM on 0844 8751483 or Emma Capon in the Tesco press office on 01992 644 645

For media enquiries on the Trussell Trust and information on case studies, please contact Molly Hodson in the Trussell Trust press office on 01722 580 182 or via email:

For media enquiries on FareShare and information on case studies, please contact Shakira Silvestri in the FareShare press office on 0207 394 2460 or via email:

Join the Neighbourhood Food Collection on Twitter: #everycanhelps and Facebook:

Notes to editors

  • The research was carried out by Opinion Matters using a sample of 4,000 adults across the UK between 6 – 18 November 2013

About the Neighbourhood Food Collection:

  • The Neighbourhood Food Collection raised 4.3 million meals for people in need including Tesco’s 30% top up.
  • The amount includes food collected at Tesco online grocery delivery centres and through local stores since the last food collection in July.
  • This is the third collection held by Tesco. The previous collections were held in December 2012 (2.4 million meals)  and July 2013 (3.5 million meals), collecting a combined total of 5.9million meals.
  • Tesco colleagues, volunteers from FareShare and the Trussell Trust and members of the Tesco Retired Staff Association helped customers donate food across the weekend.

About FareShare:

  • FareShare is a unique charity fighting hunger and its underlying causes by  providing food to more than 1,000 local charities across the UK, including homeless shelters, children’s breakfast clubs, women’s refuge centres and luncheon clubs for the elderly, helping  to feed 51,000 people every day
  • These charities prepare and serve this food onsite, offering their beneficiaries a hot, nutritious meal when they may otherwise go without
  • The majority of the food redistributed by FareShare is surplus and would otherwise go to waste. This is mainly fresh produce, such as fruit, vegetables and meat so the food collection allows us to get hold of long life products, such as pasta and rice so we can provide our member charities with even more food
  • FareShare has been operating since 2004 as an independent charity and today has 17 locations across the UK
  • Last year we redistributed 4,200 tonnes of food, enough for 10 million meals, saving each charity an average of £13,000 a year and food businesses 1,850 tonnes of CO2 emissions.
  • Find out more at

About the Trussell Trust:

  • The Trussell Trust’s award-winning UK foodbank network partners with churches and communities to provide three days nutritionally-balanced emergency food to people in crisis.
  • Over 90% food given out by foodbanks is donated by the public. Every foodbank recipient is referred by a frontline care professional such as a doctor, social worker or schools liaison officer.
  • Two new Trussell Trust foodbanks are launching every week. The Trussell Trust has launched 400 foodbanks nationwide.
  • Over 350,000 people received three days’ emergency food from a Trussell Trust foodbank in between April and September 2013, more than the total helped in the whole of the 2012-13 financial year.
  • Less than 5% of foodbank clients are homeless, many are working families struggling to make ends meet.
  • For more information on the work carried out by Trussell Trust foodbanks visit:

For more information please contact the Tesco Press Office on
01992 644645

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