Co-op funding fast-tracks doubling of Hubbub’s Community Fridge Network
23 September 2021
- 200th community fridge opens on Lancaster West Estate
- Significant milestone hit as UK-wide food saving initiative doubles in a year
- 13.6 million meals now redistributed annually
- Latest community fridge expected to support 1,500 local residents
The 200th member of environmental charity Hubbub’s Community Fridge Network opens today, marking a significant milestone for the initiative. The latest community fridge has been installed in Lancaster West Estate in North Kensington, London. It is the 50th fridge funded by Co-op, whose support for 100 new community fridges across the country by the end of this year has helped fast-track the expansion of the food-saving initiative.
Community fridges are social spaces where anyone can share surplus food. They reduce food waste and empower communities to help each other through activities such as cookery sessions and workshops on how to grow your own fruit and veg. Across the network, each fridge redistributes an average of 2.4 tonnes of food per month – enough to make 5,683 meals.
The new community fridge in has been established with the support of the Lancaster West Neighbourhood Team and Lancaster West Residents’ Association and is expected to support up to 1,500 residents on the estate. It will form part of the #LancsWestGrowsBest project, which aims to reduce the amount of money residents spend on food and support more sustainable living, through growing initiatives and the community fridge.
To launch the new fridge, food waste chef Mark Breen will be cooking Moroccan frittata, panzanella and one ingredient banana ice cream. He will be joined by two local food legends in a celebration of the estate’s diverse food culture:
- Joseph Hunte who has lived in the area for two years, runs a stall at Portobello Vegan Night Market and will be cooking vegetable fritters and fried plantain dumplings
- Scott Dennis, a resident of the estate and seasoned chef, will cook seasonal shortbread
The cooking demonstrations will offer local families tips and advice on how to reduce food waste, along with recipe cards and a chance to share the delicious food. More residents will be bringing along samples of their home cooking to share as they gather for the celebratory event with music, games and crafts for the children.
Hubbub, with support from the Kusuma Trust, have also given out Grow Your Own kits to residents to help them to start growing their own food, and a new community garden is being developed for residents to grow vegetables and herbs on the estate.
Kim Monte, the co-ordinator for the new community fridge said, "I am looking forward to the launch of the community fridge in the North Kensington Resource Centre. The community fridge will create a safe and welcoming space for residents to relax and share tips with each other, building stronger links within the Lancaster West Community”
Abbas Dadou, Chair of the Lancaster West Residents’ Association said: “We are glad that we can collaborate on a project that will help residents reduce food waste and provide a platform and training for residents to have a healthier diet by sharing their unwanted fruit and vegetables. It is also bringing jobs and opportunities to residents and giving residents a chance to connect with each other.”
Tessa Tricks, Senior Creative Partner at Hubbub, said: “To be celebrating the 200th community fridge just a year after opening our 100th is astonishing and would not have been possible without the support of Co-op. This marks the mid-point of their commitment to establish 100 new community fridges by the end of 2021. It is also testament to how important these fridges are to people across the UK. Whether they be in rural villages, busy city centres, universities or schools, they provide communities not only with fresh food that to which they may not otherwise have access, but they also bring people together to support one another while helping the planet. They are more than just a fridge; they can be a life-changing asset to a community.”
Rebecca Birkbeck, Co-op's Director of Community and Shared Value, said: “To be opening our 50th fridge with Hubbub in such a short period of time is a huge feat all round, and is testament to the initiative's success. We have been blown away by everyone's hard work, resilience and creativity, communities coming together to create not just fairer access to food, but also a fairer world.
“We’re looking forward to seeing more fridges opening up in the coming months, in communities like the one in Lancsater West, and we’d like to thank to co-op members and our customers for playing a big part in making this happen.”
For more information on The Community Fridge Network, including a map of fridge locations and advice for those interested in setting up a community fridge, visit: http://www.hubbub.org.uk/the-community-fridge
Notes to Editors
1 Average of 5,683 meals per month x 12 months x 200 fridges = 13,639,200 meals per year
James Caspell, Director of Lancaster West Neighbourhood Team said, “The Lancaster West Community Fridge will help residents reduce food waste and offer a space for residents to come together over food. This, alongside being the first council estate in Kensington and Chelsea to pilot a food waste collection is the latest part of our vision to transform Lancaster West into a model 21st Century estate that is carbon neutral by 2030.”
About the Community Fridge Network
Founded by Hubbub in July 2017, the Community Fridge Network (CFN) and fridges within the Network have been funded by backers including The National Lottery Community Fund. Liebherr has been the major donor of fridge appliances.
The network provides a free support service for any group setting up or running a Community Fridge. It aims to make it easier for new projects to become established, and to help the concept flourish across the UK and beyond.
Members of the CFN: • Are legally registered and have public liability insurance. • Register their fridge as a Food Business and receive a hygiene rating. • Risk assess and demonstrate that their health and safety procedures have the approval of their local Environmental Health Officer. • Agree to capture and report back on impact every 3 months, using the simple measurement framework provided by Hubbub.
The Co-op is one of the world’s largest consumer co-operatives with interests across food, funerals, insurance and legal services. Owned by over 4 million UK consumers, the Co-op operates 2,600 food stores, over 800 funeral homes and provides products to over 5,100 other stores, including those run by independent co-operative societies and through its wholesale business, Nisa Retail Limited.
Employing over 60,000 people, the Co-op has an annual turnover of £10 billion. As well as having clear financial and operational objectives, the Co-op is a recognised leader for its social goals and community-led programmes. The Co-op exists to meet members’ needs and stand up for the things they believe in.
When Co-op Members buy selected Co-op branded products and services, 2p for every pound spent is shared equally between the Local Community Fund for local causes and a new Community Partnerships Fund, intended to support communities through like-minded national charities and organisations.
This investment in community fridges has been made possible by Co-op members and customers thanks to the contribution of 2p in every £1 spent on Co-op own-branded products, shared between its Local Community Fund and Co-op’s new Community Partnerships Fund, which support grassroots projects that provide access to food, help improve mental wellbeing or create opportunities for young people.
Co-op is also investing in the development of the Hubbub and the Community Fridge Network, to offer support to previously established fridges and other organisations that host community fridges.
Grassroots projects wanting more information about applying for the next round of the Co-op’s Local Community Fund should visit Co-op Causes UK. The closing date for applications is 30th May. For 2021, the Local Community Fund will be supporting causes which support fairer access to food, mental wellbeing services, education and employment for young people in their communities. To learn more about Co-op Membership and select a cause to support, visit: www.coop.co.uk/membership
About The National Lottery Community Fund
We are the largest funder of community activity in the UK – we’re proud to award money raised by National Lottery players to communities across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. National Lottery players raise £30 million each week for good causes throughout the UK. Since June 2004, we have made over 200,000 grants and awarded over £9 billion to projects that have benefited millions of people.
We are passionate about funding great ideas that matter to communities and make a difference to people’s lives. At the heart of everything we do is the belief that when people are in the lead, communities thrive. Thanks to the support of National Lottery players, our funding is open to everyone. We’re privileged to be able to work with the smallest of local groups right up to UK-wide charities, enabling people and communities to bring their ambitions to life.
Hubbub is an award-winning charity that inspires ways of living that are good for the environment. Hubbub designs trailblazing campaigns that make environmental action desirable; disrupting the status quo to raise awareness, nudge behaviours and shape systems. Since 2014 Hubbub has built collaborations with over 1,600 organisations, from international businesses to local authorities and community groups – inspiring over 800,000 people to take action and change their behaviour. This includes bringing together all the major coffee cup retailers to collect and recycle 5 million coffee cups in 1 year. Hubbub’s campaigns include #LeedsByExample which brought together 25 of the UK’s largest companies to boost recycling on the high street, a 3-year partnership with IKEA to create the world’s largest consumer-facing sustainability campaign ‘Live Lagom’ and creating a Network of over 150 Community Fridges across the UK, each redistributing on average 1.5 tonnes of food every month that would otherwise have gone to waste. Hubbub also runs campaigns to tackle litter, air pollution and climate change and to promote sustainable fashion. Their innovative approach saw Hubbub win the Charity of the Year Award at the prestigious Charity Times Awards in 2020.
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