FLAVOUR – South East England
Tackling food waste and providing pathways to training and employment in the food and farming sector.
FLAVOUR is an innovative and collaborative project that tackles food waste and simultaneously creates paid employment in the food and farming sector. Since 2012 Feedback’s Gleaning Network has worked with volunteers and farmers to rescue fresh produce that would otherwise be wasted. Using this experience we are piloting new models to build a more circular regional food economy in Sussex and Kent that reduces the amount of food waste and shifts surplus food up the food waste hierarchy.
What's the problem?
Food waste on farms continues to be a major environmental challenge for the agricultural sector. A key driver of this is a shortage of hands on the land to harvest horticultural crops. Meanwhile, youth unemployment is rising and for many young people there are a shortage of meaningful paid opportunities to make a positive difference for the environment, particularly if they face additional barriers to the workplace such as neurodiversity or a lack of qualifications.
What's the solution?
Feedback’s FLAVOUR project offers inclusive paid training opportunities to young people facing barriers to regular employment. We harness the potential for positive social impacts from preventing food waste while creating pathways to meaningful training and employment. We offer entry-level positions paid at the Real Living Wage in our processing pilot, Sussex Surplus. This pilot transforms surplus fruits and vegetables into a range of value-added products; thereby significantly extending the shelf-life of the original produce and valorising it to explore the market potential of new nutrient-packed plant-based based products. By turning fresh produce at risk of going to waste into innovative and long-lasting products, we are demonstrating the solution to food waste is delicious and that the transition to a greener food system has to be socially inclusive.
Alongside this work, the Gleaning Network redistributes surplus produce from farms across Sussex and Kent with the help of fantastic Gleaning volunteers. This produce is then donated to partner organisations in the Surplus Food Network.
As a 10 partner collaboration promoting social innovation across Belgium, France and England – and funded by the EU’s Interreg 2 seas program (European Regional Development Fund) – a key outcome of this work will see learning from across the region shared.
To find out more visit: https://flavour2seas.eu/en/
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