Thousands of Kiwis facing financial hardship are set to benefit from the launch of new initiatives by one of the country’s largest food charities.
Due to the growing concern for food security in families, meal-kit provider HelloFresh has donated $70,000 to national food rescue charity, KiwiHarvest, to help launch two new community initiatives this month.
The initiatives include an expansion programme which will bring food bank services to a number of higher deprivation regions nationwide. The expansion of the national network is considered a key step in ensuring food charity recipients are provided with nutritional diversity – which is not always accessible in remote areas.
KiwiHarvest, a food charity which has delivered 14.6 million meals to New Zealand families over the past nine years, will also launch a new programme which aims to educate consumers on the impact of food waste and inspire them to make small changes to their daily habits.
Programme Whakaako (to educate) will travel throughout the country over the coming year helping to raise awareness at 20 key public events such as expos, food shows, conferences and agricultural and climate change events.
The charity will deliver talks, information packs and displays on food waste and food security as well as provide free rescued food to thousands of New Zealanders from a new promotional education trailer that allows staff to engage with the public by visiting businesses and schools.
In a second major initiative, Project A-Rohe, KiwiHarvest will expand their distribution to include areas out of reach of a suitable food hub.
The expansion programme is aiming to deliver an additional 450 tonnes of food to remote areas of central North Island including Bay of Plenty, Taupo and the Central Plateau as well as the Waikato, Northland (Te Tai Tokerau) and parts of Southland.
KiwiHarvest general manager, Blandina Diamond, says almost 2 million New Zealanders are experiencing low to moderate food security during the COVID-19 pandemic.
She says HelloFresh has been a substantial and long standing food donor to KiwiHarvest.
“KiwiHarvest’s ability to expand our services to reach further, rescue more food and positively impact our communities is reliant on financial support and donations from organisations that are socially and climate-conscious – HelloFresh is such a shining example in both of these spaces.
“This financial donation takes our collaboration to a new level and we are so grateful for our growing relationship,” she says.
HelloFresh New Zealand CEO, Tom Rutledge says his company values the importance of reducing food waste and admires the work of KiwiHarvest.
“We’re pleased to be able to support the incredible work done by KiwiHarvest, which is close to our heart, sharing an aligned goal of our business to reduce food waste and play a role in these important initiatives which will have long term benefits for our communities.”
HelloFresh is also donating $30,000 to NZ Food Network, KiwiHarvest’s sister organisation, to support its operations across the country in the beginning of 2021.