New Milton Keynes scheme invites residents to get their fill and prevent landfill

A new initiative in Milton Keynes is helping residents eat well for less and prevent perfectly good food from ending up in landfill.

The Community Larder rescues and re-distributes hundreds of tonnes of food surplus annually.

Now residents from the Great Linford Parish can sign up and take advantage of the tasty scheme.

Charities SOFEA and FairShare work in partnership to deliver the programme, and participants pay a nominal weekly amount which entitles them to a basket of food worth far more; it’s ideal for anyone who simply wants to put an end to unnecessary food waste, and for those on a low income.

The Community Larder varies from the much-used food fridges which give away food that is still edible, but past its sell-by date. All of the food distributed by the Community Larder is the result of overproduction.

“The items on offer vary every week, but are good quality and mostly branded food,” said Ruth Panther from Great Linford Parish Council (GLPC).

“Participants choose their own selection of food which is worth significantly more than they are paying for it – and fruit and vegetables are free.”

The larder operates a weekly drop-in and collect session from the Cross & Stable at Downs Barn Boulevard. Individuals can access the scheme for £3.50 per week. A family membership is £7 weekly.

“The larder is a brilliant way to re-distribute perfectly good food; many of the items have very long dates on them,” said Ruth, “Sending it to landfill simply because of over production would be an obscene waste.

“This scheme allows families to eat well and save money, and helps the environment. GLPC is proud to support this initiative and the initial take-up has been very encouraging.”

Money generated from the larder goes straight back to SOFEA to pay for the service, and allows them to purchase more food at a fraction of cost price – so the savings can be passed on to participants.

GLPC hopes that as more people sign up to the Community Larder they will be able to expand the sessions; ideas include launching a coffee morning, children’s craft corner and inviting advice organisations to attend.

Ruth added: “If you haven’t already, sign up today. It’s a win-win; getting your fill helps to stop landfill!”

Parishioners wanting to sign up should visit great-linford.gov.uk email glpc@great-linford.gov.uk or call 01908 606613.

Membership is open to everyone in the Great Linford Parish; residents from Blakelands, Bolbeck Park, Conniburrow, Downhead Park, Downs Barn, Giffard Park, Great Linford, Neath Hill, Pennyland, Redhouse Park and Willen Park can sign up.

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