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New charity pop-up trend to combat food waste

Not-for-profits combatting food insecurity have invested in social enterprise projects to raise critical funds to feed Australia’s hungry

To combat food insecurity across the country, not-for-profits fighting food waste have introduced pop-ups aimed at raising critical funds.

One such initiative was born from a partnership between OzHarvest and the social enterprise profit-for-purchase café, Gratia. A pop-up café in Surry Hills in Sydney will offer patrons a zero-waste inspired menu with all proceeds to go to OzHarvest.

OzHarvest Founder and CEO, Ronni Kahn, said: “This is the perfect partnership as it brings together passionate people and delicious food for a great cause.

“For the next three months Gratia customers can support OzHarvest through the simple act of buying a meal to give a meal. We believe that food is love and what better way to show you care than investing in brunch with purpose.”

The zero-waste inspired menu will use donated food from Brassarie Bread, Black Star Pastry and Select Fresh. Ingredients that often go to waste will be made into gourmet meals with all profits to help feed those in need across Australia.

Gratia Co-Founder, Nicolas Degryse, said their philosophy was around fostering gratitude and empathy in day-to-day lives, adding: “We’re all about community and compassion and are excited to bring the OzHarvest Café by Gratia to life.”

According to OzHarvest, a third of all food produced is lost or wasted, accounting for 1.3 billion tonnes of food that cost the global economy nearly $1 trillion each year.

In Australia, it is estimated to cost the economy $20 billion a year. Five million tonnes of food ends up in landfills, which is more combined waste than farms, manufacturers, supermarkets and the hospitality industry.

In Victoria, a grocery store located in the back of the not-for-profit restaurant, Lentil As Anything, will provide patrons with rescued food with all proceeds to go to ensuring the team can continue fighting food waste and food insecurity.

The store will be in the back of the vegan restaurant, where guests pay depending on their financial ability. The shelves are stocked with food rescued by the Food Without Borders team and has no set prices, with patrons encouraged to contribute if they can.

“We offer people the choice to contribute financially if they are in a position to do so, in order to support our food rescue operation,” Lentil As Anything said in a statement.

“Alternatively, like our restaurants, patrons are invited to volunteer with us if they wish to contribute to our project in another way.”

All contributions will go towards sustaining the food rescue operations, paying for transport costs, storage and electricity bills for the refrigeration of the rescued food.

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