Several members made a visit to the Brighton Real Junk Food Project with Hastings Matters. They intercept edible food and serve it on a pay as you feel basis. Find them Wednesdays at the Churchill Square market and Fridays at the One Church.
The visitors were really impressed with the organisation and are considering doing something similar in Hastings.
Here are some observations by Carol Ridge.
- Community Interest Company with six directors.
- Ten chefs who include people who prep.and cook. Three to four people hold Food hygiene certificates.
- Individuals are responsible for various tasks. Book keeping, Food collection etc
This group is from the community and includes anyone with a day to spare. It may also include people with mild learning difficulties. Volunteers are introduced a few at a time.
Food is collected from supermarkets and shops/markets. Lidl supply a large proportion.
One Church in Gloucester place Brighton. Fully equipped kitchen with large ovens, work surfaces and dish washer. Crockery and utensils are provided by the church. Three shelves are allocated to the project in the pantry for “Dry stores”.
Diners pay as they wish but we saw many that did not pay at all. Biodegradable take away containers are provides for those who wish to take food home with them. There is also a small area where people may help themselves to items such as boxes of cereals, fresh fruit and snacks. It depends what is available each week. Any number from one to three hundred people are fed.
Diners from all sections of the community
The day we visited diners included the young and the elderly but on this visit there were more young people. The unemployed and the employed, the poor, the disabled, students, single mothers and their children and whole families. Even a group of international young people who were part of the “Couch surfing “organisation.
The atmosphere is so upbeat and positive.
Any unusable food waste is sent to SILO. This is a restaurant that has a super compost machine.
You can visit their website at http://www.realjunkfoodbrighton.co.uk/