A fruit and veg producer is helping vulnerable people across the UK by using excess carrots and sending them to food charity FareShare.

Greenyard Frozen has created 80,000 meals by recycling food waste from purple carrots before distributing them to a network of frontline charities, including homeless hostels, older people’s lunch clubs and community centres.

The Department for environment, food and rural affairs (DEFRA) has provided a grant of £1.9 million towards this fund as part of their £15 million scheme launched in January to help redistribution organisations across England overcome the barriers associated with getting food currently going to waste onto people’s plates.

FareShare, a charity which aims to relieve food poverty and reduce food waste in the UK, and its ‘Surplus with Purpose Fund’ helped cover the additional processing and labour costs that came with Greenyard’s incentive.

FareShare CEO, Lindsay Boswell, said: “WRAP estimates over 2 million tonnes of edible surplus food goes to waste each year within the UK supply chain alone – yet at the same time, over 8 million people struggle to put food on the table.

“By accessing FareShare’s Surplus with Purpose Fund, Greenyard Frozen are doing the right thing with their surplus veg – getting it onto the plates of people who need it.”

Laura Dixon, customer service manager at Greenyard Frozen, said: “We’ve worked with FareShare for many years whereby they’ve helped us redistribute excess packed stock from our business to those in need.  But what was different about this campaign was that by using the Government grant, we were able to pack stock specifically for FareShare which was in bulk storage within our business. It was a real game changer and has opened the door for us to increase our support to FareShare in the future.”