Tesco customers taking part in a new campaign to provide meals to children living in food insecurity have enabled thousands of meals to be donated.
Over the last three weeks, Tesco has given a donation for every piece of fruit and vegetable purchased across all its stores, to provide food that its partner FareShare will redistribute to children’s charities.
Sales of stacks of strawberries, a bounty of bananas and container-loads of cucumbers purchased by Tesco customers mean that over 5000 charities across the country will now be given food to help the 2.3 million children in the UK living in food insecurity.
The warm summer weather saw bumper purchases of strawberries, cucumbers and bananas, allowing Tesco to exceed its target of providing three million meals-worth of food to help charities and community groups supplied by FareShare.
Cucumbers were the most popular item on average sold on a Monday throughout the collection with strawberries winning in popularity on Tuesday and Wednesdays.
And when it came to the league of fresh fruit and veg buyers, outside Greater London it was Essex shoppers that topped the table, followed by shoppers in Hertfordshire, Kent and Greater Manchester.
Tesco has been working with FareShare since 2016 and to date has redistributed more than 120 million meals of food to charities and community groups across the UK. FareShare supports frontline charities and community groups working with children – from summer holiday clubs and breakfast clubs to community kitchens, and groups which supply food parcels to those facing food insecurity.
‘Buy One to Help a Child’ is the latest in a number of Tesco community-focussed programmes which are helping to build stronger communities across the UK.
FareShare CEO Lindsay Boswell CBE said the food would make a real difference to frontline charities working with children, and thanked Tesco customers for their support.
“During the summer months, many families can struggle without the safety net of free school meals,” he said. “At FareShare, we work with a network of around 10,500 charities and community groups supporting children and families across the UK. With so many more people facing tough circumstances as a result of the pandemic, this food is needed more than ever.
“Thank you to every single Tesco customer that made a purchase during this campaign – through the simple act of buying your fruit and veg at Tesco, you’re helping FareShare to get fresh, healthy food to children across the UK.”
Jason Tarry, Tesco UK and ROI CEO, said: “We wanted to find a really simple way to do our bit and help our customers do the same, and we are delighted at the success of the Buy One to Help A Child scheme. By encouraging healthier choices for our customers while helping to feed children through our partnership with FareShare we can play our part in supporting stronger communities.”
Tesco is a member of the Child Poverty Task Force, formed by Marcus Rashford, and continues to support his campaign for free school meals for every child that needs them, at any time.