As we start 2022 Julian Mines, CEO of FareShare South West, shares his thoughts on the year ahead and the achievements of 2021.
“2021 was a huge year for FareShare South West in terms of the support we provided to our charity partners. As part of the FareShare UK network, we are proud of what we have achieved in partnership with other organisations, all working together. As we enter another year of uncertainty with the pandemic, all we can be sure of is the increasing need for our services, and therefore for the continued support of our volunteers, food partners and fundraisers.
Looking ahead to 2022, we are planning developments that I know will be transformational for both our communities and our environment- from new warehouse launches to new food suppliers, and from our upcoming Employability Programme to new partnerships with frontline charities. This includes an extension of our food services into Devon and Cornwall after years of hard work, which will bring a vital food supply into an area hit by food poverty and rural isolation. Although this will mean another very busy year for our teams, I know they are as determined as I am to move forwards, particularly against a backdrop of such need both socially and environmentally. The impact this charity has is what gets us up in the morning!
I want to add a particular thanks to our volunteers, who have stuck with us through busy periods, freezing winter warehouses, and much change to make what we do possible- thank you for continuing to make change happen.
Thank you for all you did for us in 2021 and I look forward to 2022 with you.”
So, what did we achieve in 2021? We pulled together a breakdown in numbers to give you the lowdown.
2021 saw more high demand for ambient (non fridge) foods for food parcels and crisis level food support, as the effects of the pandemic continue to hit our frontline partners. While we delivered our emergency operations such as FoodStock 2021 and our summer holiday project operation, we also delivered weekly food to over 390 charities, schools and community groups. Working with FareShare UK we saw an increase in fresh fruit and vegetables, saving an incredible 617 tonnes from waste. While our overall food volumes have increased sharply, it’s not always been easy to find the food types we need, and fresh meat suppliers has been a huge challenge for us. As a result we are working harder than ever to ask new meat suppliers to do the right thing with their surplus, like the brilliant fieldandflower and The Jolly Hog.
From all of us at FareShare South West- happy 2022, and here’s to another incredible year!