When I heard the food sharing app Olio was extending out from London to the rest of the country I thought this was a fantastic idea.
Anyone who has seen TV programmes such as Hugh’s War on Waste will know that a shocking amount of perfectly edible food is wasted by households and businesses in the UK every week. Over the course of a year around 7 million tonnes of food and drink are thrown away, of which over half was perfectly edible. This waste costs families an average of £470 per year, rising to £700 for families with children – enough for a holiday! For more surprising facts, and lots of ideas for reducing food waste take a look at Love Food Hate Waste
So, where does Olio come in? This free app allows people, whether individuals or businesses, to offer and to request surplus food by uploading a photo and details. Someone nearby that can use the item sends you a message and collection can be arranged. Some areas have drop off and collection points in local shops to make this easier. You can charge for items, but the majority are offered free.
I jumped at the chance to become a volunteer ambassador to get the scheme going in my local area, and am encouraging people to download the app, to check their cupboards for quality food that they are never going to get around to eating, and to get sharing!
The items are gradually being offered, but it would be really great to see more people joining in. Take a look and see what is on offer – if you don’t have surplus food yourself, you may find something you’d like to try.
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The image at top of post is courtesy of Olio.