Discussing meals waste and feeding the nation with UK Harvest

We not too long ago hosted an Instagram Reside, the place Magpie Izzy sat down with Sarah Morison from meals waste charity UK Harvest. They mentioned the work UK Harvest do, how they assist feed folks throughout the UK and extra! For those who missed the dwell, don’t concern! You’ll be able to watch it under. You may also learn the transcript of the dwell under, too!

Don’t neglect to take a look at the UK Harvest web site right here. You could find them on Instagram right here and comply with The Nourish Hub right here.

So thanks a lot for approaching. That is Sarah Morison from UK Harvest for everybody that’s joined to date, hopefully we’ll get just a few extra folks as time goes on. So UK Harvest is a meals, meals waste charity, I’d say, you realize, making an attempt to attempt to feed the nation presently, which is a tremendous, superb factor to be doing. So we wished to hop on with Sarah and form of focus on UK Harvest, and the whole lot they stand up to, the work they do and how one can assist them and the way they might help you.

So yeah, so we’ll be discussing issues. For those who’ve bought any questions, simply go away them under. We’ll attempt to reply them. And there’ll be a playback of this on the web site and on our YouTube channel afterwards. So if it’s important to go away for any motive, or your connection drops out otherwise you are available in midway by way of, there will probably be a playback. So, Sarah, so if you wish to simply begin by form of speaking us by way of what UK Harvest is what they do, that’d be actually nice.

Completely, thanks. UK Harvest was actually arrange in 2017. So, we’re fairly a younger charity, we’re very a lot an environmental charity. As we forestall meals waste, the entire concept is we seize that meals that will in any other case go to waste. So it is likely to be surplus meals, proper throughout the provision chain. And that’s farmers, growers, producers, wholesalers, distributors, dwell occasions, any meals which may in any other case get wasted. And truly 80% of what we rescue is perishable. So it’s contemporary fruit and veg, so that you’re working to fairly tight timings as a result of it actually can rot in entrance of you. And we have to seize that and redistribute it to individuals who really want it. In order that’s the environmental stage.

However what’s so implausible is taking one thing that will in any other case go to waste and be sure that those that actually do want it. And that’s homeless, refuges, home abuse shelters, we’ve bought a community of just about 300 charities proper throughout the south of England that we assist by way of this donated meals. However there’s one other challenge I’ll inform you about in a minute. So we’re tremendous busy accumulating the meals and redistributing it to those that want it. However I believe the necessary factor is a few meals redistribution charities are actually about logistics.

We’re sturdy believers that for those who wrap the whole lot we do round with training – it’s no giving somebody a butternut squash in the event that they don’t know what to do with it. So we’re actually about equipping folks to be taught some funds pleasant, fast straightforward ideas that they will use within the kitchen to develop their weight loss program and construct up wholesome nutritious meals and meals with the meals that we offer.


Nice and I observed in your web site you have got a complete bit about recipes, straightforward recipes, you’ve bought some good, pancakes on there, frittatas, scrumptious issues, my mouth is watering once I was all of it, however actually nice that you’ve that type of on-line presence that you just say that training presence, you’ve bought some movies I believe they’re known as the Furry Harvesters, that’s nice, nice initiative as some actually good movies and making some straightforward issues.

Such as you say I believe it’s nice you realize, it’s one factor to present folks meals after which to a different factor to form of educate them how they will how they will make issues out of it and there’s so many issues you may make out of you realize, some tomatoes you may make an array of issues and you realize, I believe it’s actually nice that that form of on-line platform is there for folks to form of return to as properly and I observed you had a a web-based prepare dinner alongside.


Yeah, that’s one factor I used to be going to hope to advertise in the present day truly for those who go onto our web site, so it’s UK in scroll alongside the highest there’s varied tabs and beneath neighborhood, we’ve bought a complete part known as Nourish Ed so nourish training, and that’s simply full of cash saving, waste stopping, cookery programs and ideas. A lot of, as you say, leftover recipe concepts to present you inspiration. So for those who’ve bought these previous couple of carrots mendacity round, you realize, I might do it right here, I can try this. We’re actually fortunate to work with tremendous artistic cooks. And each single day right here is like Prepared Regular Prepare dinner, we don’t know what produce goes to be collected from the farms that day.

So this morning, I’ve simply been over and there’s cauli shoots in there.So like lengthy cauliflowers, we’ve bought lots of pretty contemporary tomatoes that may in all probability flip in a few days. So we’re desperately developing with numerous extra tomato recipes, chilies, all kinds. In order that Nourish Ed platform on our web site is simply nice for occurring to and selecting up these recipe and concepts.

Additionally on there, you’ll see there’s three dwell cook-alongs developing. And as everyone knows, we’ve all needed to rein our budgets in, we will’t essentially, Deliveroo takeaways are all now a luxurious. So we’ve bought a collection of cook-alongs developing, there’s one on the thirtieth of September primary on the 4th of October primary on the seventeenth. They’re all free to hitch, and we’re doing takeaways, we’re going to show you the right way to make, I don’t know cool chilli, a little bit of a Mexican, we would do.

However utilizing actually good retailer cabinet elements that you just’ve already in all probability bought at house, and also you’ve forgotten concerning the paprika within the cabinet. After which there’s and we’ll put that collectively and you’ll have a fakeaway at house. In order that’s about equipping folks with actually good cooking abilities, however to eat actually wholesome on a funds.


That’s such a good suggestion as properly, as a result of such as you say, you realize, all of us have a cheeky take away every now and then, we like to, you realize, finish our Friday night time with one thing scrumptious, to reward ourselves for the week, however it’s about saving the pennies in the intervening time. And you realize, quite a lot of my favorite meals that I make are ones that I form of suppose proper what have I bought within the cabinet? How can I make one thing out of this?

And I believe yeah, such as you say, simply form of displaying folks but, you realize, the weirdest mixture of elements you won’t have considered might make one thing so scrumptious, and prevent a lot cash. And I believe you realize, fakeaway is such a great way to start out as a result of you realize, all of us love a takeaway, however sadly, they’re simply going up in value. And generally, you realize, you may make one thing even higher than to remove at house.


So with that, you’re completely proper, it’s cheaper whenever you do it at house, you’ll be able to have simply numerous enjoyable doing it, particularly if it’s a part of a cook-along. And what we attempt to embed in all our programs are these form of meals waste ideas. So that you just’re you’re not peeling a veg, you’ll be able to ditch the peeler, it simply give it a scrub, it’s bought a great deal of diet within the within the skins of those greens and issues, and actually eager about what waste you’re creating at house.

As a result of we’re very a lot working at this business stage. And we for those who take a look at the meals waste obtainable, we’re taking 30% of what will get wasted. That’s what occurs at farms, however 70% of meals waste truly occurs at house. So we’ve all set to work actually arduous to scale back our personal. And that’s not similar to monetary, it’s additionally as a result of all of that meals, the trouble that’s gone into rising and the water and the ability and the vitality, the transport to get that meals after which put it within the bin and throw it into landfill is simply tragic. So I really feel like one environmental factor we will all do to assist.


Yeah, that’s fascinating. You say that, as a result of finest earlier than dates and promote by dates are there as a information, however I believe lots of people use them as you realize, bible. I get, you realize, perhaps hen and belongings you don’t wish to use previous the date as a result of they are often harmful, however issues like greens and fruit. You recognize, do the sniff take a look at. So that you would possibly get the odd squidgy tomato, however I discover you’ll be able to chuck them in a spag bol. That’s effective. I believe you’re proper. I believe we waste much more than folks suppose. And I’ve actually tried to chop again and suppose extra about what I’m chucking away. And the freezer is my finest good friend. You recognize, the whole lot I can’t eat, I simply freeze. It’s nice.


That sounds such as you already all around the ideas, which is nice. I believe that you just’re completely proper with finest earlier than dates, that’s actually a information of high quality. It’s not a faith in any means. Simply use your individual judgement. And the one factor we actually advocate is for those who see a use by date, that’s the one you take heed to. And as you say, for those who get close to that and also you realise that you just’re not going to make use of these hen breasts tonight, tomorrow night time, whack them within the freezer, it buys you an enormous period of time. You’ll be able to actually freeze that three months, after which use it whenever you want it. However you simply should freeze freeze freeze for those who’re developing in opposition to a by date.


Yeah, undoubtedly. So, what do UK Harvest do form of on the bottom stage, so I do know you have got some hubs, and a few neighborhood kitchens and issues. May you inform us a bit extra about these?


Completely. We grew massively throughout COVID. You’ll be able to think about when all of a sudden all of these routes to hospitality, faculties, eating places, the whole lot closed. All of that meals backed up very, in a short time. And we have been actually inundated with a loopy quantity of meals. And though we have been delivering to numerous charities and people who have been weak and sheltering throughout COVID, we fairly rapidly realised that that simply wasn’t the simplest means of doing it.

So after we arrange this community of pantries, and we name it a pop up pantry, and it’s actually a lot extra than simply meals, it’s a means of coming collectively in the neighborhood. And those that we run down in Chichester, the place we’re based mostly, however we stretch so far as Midhurst and all the way down to Selsey. It’s all on our web site beneath pop up pantry, we flip up for an hour at a neighborhood centre. And we work actually intently with that neighborhood to make it possible for folks from that actually native space are coming in.

We additionally goal the housing associations in that space. We work with quite a lot of refugees.It’s nice we work with anybody who is likely to be on a decent funds, and the distinction with us and meals banks is there’s no registration. We welcome everybody, you’re all working collectively to attempt to rescue this meals. However people who find themselves on a decent funds can actually pop a recommended donation of £3.50 and convey a bag and rescue the meals that they wish to feed their household with. So not like a meals financial institution, the place it is likely to be very a lot tinned base, that is rather more contemporary, nutritious, and other people can select. And that choice is admittedly key, as a result of they’re selecting what they wish to feed their household that week.

And we will additionally wrap the meals round with recommendation. Citizen’s recommendation are superb. They arrive all the way down to a few of our pantries and so they might help folks get on board with checking what different further advantages they could have. All of that may be wrapped round and we have interaction folks across the meals And we’ve actually discovered publish COVID that you realize, whether or not it’s some aged individuals who might need had that form of isolation, this breaks that social isolation, it brings these communities collectively. And it’s such a contented vibe.

The pantry is nice, everybody goes away sharing recipes, concepts, recommendations on what we will do with the broccoli and it will get folks speaking and eager about the right way to use and develop these diets and never waste meals. In order that’s pantry community. After which as you mentioned we’ve additionally bought this fabulous challenge in London known as the Nourish Hub. And I’d encourage anybody in West London to return and go to it’s unimaginable. We have been fortunate sufficient to get funding by way of the Mayor of London and Hammersmith and Fulham Borough Council to show a type of, it’s like a Sainsbury’s native that was, it’s on the backside of an enormous tower block in West London, Shepherds Bush. And it’s now essentially the most thriving neighborhood kitchen.

So we serve actually nutritious, nice vegetarian meals on daily basis, there’s a recommended donation value of say, 5 kilos for curry, scrumptious curry. However for those who can’t afford it, that’s effective. Don’t fear about it. So we we goal everybody in the neighborhood, whether or not you’re working in an workplace across the nook, and you’ll pop down for a pleasant reasonably priced lunch. Otherwise you is likely to be actually struggling and homeless. And we’ve some pretty guys that are available in each single day and have sizzling meals with us. So we actually bringing that complete neighborhood collectively in West London.

And what’s nice as properly is the catering kitchen there, the crew of cooks who’re prepping the meals for the cafe on daily basis, are actually supported by I imply, none of our operation would occur with out volunteers. We’ve bought some pretty volunteers in there who’re additionally studying actually key cookery abilities. And generally it’s like a stepping stone for them to get employment, say on the finish of it and go into the hospitality business. So we will prepare up throughout the kitchen and provides them references after they transfer on. So there’s that catering website.

After which on the different finish of the Neighborhood Cafe is a wonderful coaching kitchen, the place we will run focused programs to households, to totally different charities we work with, to show these key cooking abilities. And within the holidays, clearly, we’ve the vacation exercise programme to assist these children on free college meals to be taught some nice cooking abilities and likewise get a pleasant sizzling lunch on the identical time. So I can’t say initiatives are occurring throughout. But it surely’s actually good how we will use meals. And that is all rescued meals. It’s all used to essentially maintain and interact folks round meals waste consuming meals, and actually getting folks out of that isolation and coming collectively round meals.


Yeah, I believe the phrase neighborhood is ideal for it since you actually are. You recognize, it’s not nearly meals. It’s about you realize, serving to folks get entangled and make buddies. And I believe that’s actually pretty, particularly as you say, COVID put lots of people into isolation and other people felt very lonely. And you realize, there’s an enormous loneliness challenge with aged folks particularly and I believe that’s a stunning, pretty factor and it provides them a form of protected area to return and take part. And I additionally noticed in your web site, you talked about you’ll be able to there’s a recommended donation, however you mentioned you’ll by no means flip anybody away. So even for those who’d solely give 10p. You recognize, that’s that’s so pretty to know. And I believe that may actually reassure lots of people and take weight off lots of people’s shoulders, particularly in the intervening time.

So I believe that’s actually nice. I had a pair extra questions for you. So clearly you mentioned you have been based mostly in Chichester, and also you form of go all the way down to, I noticed you doing a little issues in Brighton the place I dwell truly. So is it form of simply based mostly form of down South?


The UK Harvest distribution centre for those who like, the precise rescue operations a part of the enterprise could be very a lot as you say in Chichester. However in truth, the realm we cowl, we go so far as Bristol on a Monday and acquire from there, we go proper out to Kent and acquire there and into South London. So we acquire, we cowl very a lot the South of England by way of our attain. And that’s by way of the donors we choose up from.

And we assist by way of different ones, generally there’s alternatives that come by way of, you realize, superb quantities of meals which may all of a sudden develop into obtainable up close to Birmingham, we’ve truly arrange throughout COVID implausible factor known as the Xcess Community. We are able to put hyperlinks on I’m certain, however I believe up with different related sort charities. So with an enormous alternative comes by way of to us, we’re actually good, the entire meals rescue world is set to only not waste. So we inform companions that is likely to be the bread and butter additional north. And we’ll say, are you able to guys rescue this as a result of it’s simply out of our attain. And equally, if there’s an enormous meals, or we’ve bought a glutt of candy potatoes, we’ll hyperlink with Metropolis Harvest, and do a swap will drive up with potatoes, they’ll give us apples and pears, you realize, we actually commerce the entire time. So it’s an actual partnership working.

However by way of utilization of the initiatives that individuals can entry. Our pantries in the intervening time are very particular spaced all our programs which are obtainable on our web site, that’s all on-line, that’s nationwide, you go for it get pleasure from wherever you’re. After which the London centre. I imply, we’ll see anybody that may get to Shepherd’s Bush. We’re 5 minutes away from that.


Great and also you mentioned that, you realize, you supply quite a lot of issues totally free, which I believe is superb, you realize, these programs on-line and these recipes on-line. So how can folks donate to you or volunteer their time? You recognize, can folks simply signal as much as volunteer? Or can they you realize, donate a bit of cash in the event that they wish to? How does that work?


Sensible. Completely. The best factor is for those who go to our web site, the highest proper, it says Get Concerned, for those who click on on there, there’s alternative ways of doing it. So you’ll be able to donate time. And if you wish to volunteer for us, completely. There’s a join sheet there. We’re at all times on the lookout for volunteers, the the alternatives, if I’m trustworthy, form of fluctuate relying on the initiatives we’ve bought concerned. But it surely’s nice to be concerned, you’ll at all times have a publication that you realize, we maintain you updated with these these choices. The opposite click on down is clearly Donate Cash.

For help, we’re a charity, we’re completely reliant on donations on grant funding, some Nationwide Lottery Funding Council funding, we actually really want it to maintain these vans on the street to maintain rescuing. So if anybody is ready to donate cash, then that will be fabulous. And there’s a quite simple donate button there. The opposite factor, which is simply pretty is simply to enroll to our publication hyperlink, very straightforward to do. And that means, you’ll simply have a publication each week with what we’re as much as as a charity. And also you would possibly see the totally different initiatives we’re concerned in, and likewise some meals waste ideas.So there are alternative ways you can get entangled like that.


Great. And do you have got any form of ideas simply off the highest of your head? You recognize, we’ve lined just a few little ideas right here and there. Simply methods folks you realize, tonight can look of their fridge and suppose, proper? How can I save this meals? Or you realize, is there something that you are able to do to avoid wasting your self a bit of cash and form of forestall some meals waste in your house?


Completely, there’s hundreds of thousands, we frequently say quite a lot of it’s simply organising your fridge, generally it’s fairly good to have one of many cabinets, which is the ‘I must eat this now’ shelf, to just be sure you’ve you’ve clocked what’s in there. And perhaps it’s the hen breast that’s nearly to go off, it makes certain that there’s a form of go to shelf that you just use first. And actually when you’re wanting on the knowledge, ignore the very best earlier than, it’s utilized by you take a look at. Put it within the freezer, for those who’re not going to make use of it, undoubtedly.

The opposite factor we at all times say is simply earlier than you get grocery store or perhaps earlier than you head to work within the morning, take an image of the fridge, take an image of your cabinet. So whenever you buy groceries, you find yourself shopping for what you’ve already bought in your fridge, easy factor, simply take that image and also you’ll bear in mind to not purchase double, you realize, plan the meals that you just’re truly going to eat and be sensible about it. We generally have this grand plan and what we’re going to buy for the week after which half of it, you realize doesn’t get used for no matter. Actually, actually take into consideration the meal planning. Take that image of your meals and simply attempt to eat within the order that you realize it’s going to expire.

However yeah, simply get artistic combine issues up. Attempt to experiment. We’ve bought some recipe concepts that may at all times provide you with inspiration.


Yeah, completely. There’s a lot, a lot in your web site. We’ve bought a query right here from Chloe who says; “Actually nice concepts. Is there any meals that shouldn’t be frozen?”


Any meals that shouldn’t be frozen…there’s generally controversy about egg however I’m afraid, we nonetheless freeze eggs. You’ll be able to break them down, crack them in a bag and that means they are often frozen. I’m doing a shout out right here. I can’t consider something off the highest of my head. Salad I suppose, no matter you name salad. However something like herbs, you realize, chop it up, put it in with oil in these little ice trays. That might be a terrific tip. However no, we haven’t discovered one which’s an enormous no but, so we’re all about freezing for those who can.


Nice and you realize there’s so many issues that individuals don’t suppose to freeze that freeze effective. I froze hummus, I froze cream cheese you realize generally it would separate a bit, simply give them a stir and it’ll return to regular. I believe simply trial and error. I believe I some issues, yeah, they could look a bit dodgy as soon as defrosted. However yeah, simply give them a stir and so they type of return. However yeah, I believe that’s a very, actually good tip.

I’ve by no means truly tried to freeze eggs, however I suppose that will work. I don’t see why that wouldn’t work. However yeah. And clearly you spoke concerning the cook-alongs developing. Is there every other occasions that we will look out for or something thrilling developing for UK Harvest?


We now have bought some initiatives, I’m simply wishing we have been a few days down the road. So, I’d actually find it irresistible if everybody can comply with @UKHarvest. For our Instagram, we’ll be launching one thing quickly round Halloween. I hope ideas, as a result of I’m an actual one in every of like, don’t simply carve your pumpkin, prepare dinner it this yr, you realize, make it possible for issues like that simply don’t get wasted.

So the Nourish Hub on Instagram, that’s all reveals you all these pretty menus which are occurring in London on daily basis. However the cook-alongs, that’s a nationwide programme, we’d love folks to hitch the cook-alongs and the extra who can have interaction with that the higher. So attempt. See what you suppose and try this fakeaway at house.


Yeah, great. And you realize what, it’s humorous you say about pumpkins, as a result of I made a stunning pumpkin soup final yr with my pumpkin and toasted the seeds. And that was scrumptious. I believe it’s nice. Like, I believe when you get into that mindset of proper, I’ve bought some leftovers. What can I do with it? Proper, I’ve bought a random little bit of pumpkin, what can I do?

And you realize, my Mum, she’s a really frugal girl. She’s taught me all I do know, bless her and he or she at all times says freeze all vegetable scrapings and issues and make some vegetable inventory out of them. And I believe that’s such a pleasant concept. And also you suppose, oh, it’s a bit bizarre simply shoving a great deal of vegetable peel in water, however it’s so scrumptious. And it’s so low cost to make. And once more, simply one other method to forestall that waste, which is nice.


We truly had a stunning crew of volunteers in right here earlier and so they’ve been making, so that you peel potatoes, as a result of we did truly must peel them for this challenge we have been doing. However all the peelings, we actually simply places somewhat little bit of curry powder on, little bit of oil, put them within the oven is essentially the most scrumptious, like form of potato peel crisps. So I’m like you may make this a problem. What can I do with these? Simply Simply keep away from placing something within the bin. Please, please, please.


And for those who do compost it, don’t put it within the normal waste. Nicely, thanks a lot. Simply earlier than we go, I used to be gonna say you realize, clearly, the colder months are coming and Christmas is developing. And if there may be anybody watching or who watches this again that perhaps is aware of somebody at Christmas that perhaps is homeless or one thing like that. Are you open through the Christmas interval? Are you serving to folks out at the moment?


We are actually simply placing collectively our programme for Christmas. So I believe the very best factor is please take a look at the web site. Completely. We are going to clearly prolong the assistance as a lot as we will. And we’re working with different initiatives. So we’ll at all times signpost to different further assist if we have to. And as much as Christmas, we will probably be doing a great deal of totally different training courses about simply how to not over purchase for Christmas, simply plan and don’t overdo it as a result of it truly is a form of time of yr the place there may be quite a lot of meals waste that so avoidable.

So I believe this yr notably, when budgets are tight, we’re going to make it possible for folks don’t overspend. However you realize, tons to share and maintain following us. However sure, we will probably be supporting as many individuals as we will this winter so the extra donations the higher. There’s a donate meals button additionally on the web site. So we are going to work with any meals manufacturers, business companions, growers who’re in a position to hyperlink up with us that’d be nice.


Great. Nicely thanks a lot. I’ve been chatting with Sarah Morison from UK Harvest so be sure to comply with UK Harvest and is it Nourish Hub?


The Nourish Hub, sure. It’s our London Neighborhood Cafe. But it surely’s all you’ll be able to see the hyperlink definitely by way of at UK Harvest. Sarah Morison Great and ensure to take a look at the UK Harvest web site. You’ll be able to volunteer, you’ll be able to donate or simply try their superb recipes. They bought some very nice issues on there. So undoubtedly verify that out. You’ve bought some casseroles, you’ve bought some pies, the whole lot, so undoubtedly for those who’re caught for recipes, undoubtedly try UK harvest. We will probably be popping this dwell on our YouTube channel and on our web site. So you’ll be able to watch it again for those who’ve simply are available in. And we’ll be linking to the UK Harvest web site so yow will discover them there as properly.