Supermarkets have lots of surplus food at Christmas. They want to have stock of the standard items for everyone, whenever they come in, and some surprising things that they might only stock for the holiday, when customer might want to try something new. When everything closes around 4:00 p.m. on Christmas Eve, they have lots left over, and two or three days before they open again. Often, the use-by dates are fairly soon, so they can’t hold it until after the holiday. On Christmas Eve 2019, Eggcup collected a lot of food, but some of the usual outlets were closed. In [...]
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Eggcup is delighted that its work in the Covid-19 crisis has been recognised by a certificate from the High Sheriff of Lancashire. If you are thinking of six-guns and pointed stars, Catherine Penny is not that kind of sheriff. The role dates back to 1154, and its holders, who are appointed for one year, included John of Gaunt. The role is ceremonial now. (Gardeners may recognise Catherine Penny as founder of Stydd Nursery in Ribchester, with its famous roses). In a normal year she would have gone around the county visiting and promoting charitable work, especially work with children, which is [...]
The meals that Eggcup delivers to vulnerable people around the area are made by the Lancaster and Morecambe College Catering Department, with puddings from Chef’s Catering Northwest. When David, our charity manager, first proposed the idea to Adrian (above) and Lindsey (below) at the College, they were eager to participate. The students had been sent home, the staff were doing distance teaching, the restaurant was shut, and the vast kitchens weren’t being used. Lindsey prepares scones. Adrian and Lindsey got together a team with their colleague Steve, some student volunteers, and College colleagues from Personnel, Health and Safety, Occupational [...]
The Morecambe Visitor gives annual awards to people and organisations who have brightened up our community, in all sorts of categories: Business, Health Hero, Charity Fundraiser. Eggcup has won the 2020 award for Sustainability. We have had a very busy year since starting in June 2019, setting up the warehouse, starting a new food club, and responding to the challenges of Covid-19 with deliveries to members, a new food delivery programme, and a Buying Cooperative to add some essentials to our surplus food parcels. And we are delighted to have the well-deserved recognition for the efforts of our hard-working team and [...]
The Covid-19 crisis has brought lots more work to do at Eggcup: new projects, with new deliveries and pick-ups, lots more food to check, weigh, sort and package, more demands for data and reports. Fortunately it also brought more volunteers. When lockdown began, many people on furlough were looking for satisfying things to do, and many people who would usually volunteers elsewhere found their regular work cancelled. We got a remarkable range of people coming to Eggcup: a coach driver, a plumber, civil servants, a human relations consultant, students, teachers. We also got help from members of the Big Kid Circus, [...]
Eggcup was set up to provide surplus food to food clubs in Lancaster and Morecambe. But from the beginning, the aim was to be flexible, to allow it to do whatever was needed. This flexibility has been tested in the Covid-19 outbreak, when food clubs stopped having social meetings, restaurants shut down, and supermarkets were besieged with panic buying, so that for some items they had empty shelves, rather than the usual surplus. I talked to Project Manager David France to catch up with what Eggcup has been doing so far during the crisis. Food clubs are meant to [...]
As we set up our intercepted food warehouse, we have been looking at well-established projects elsewhere with similar aims, so that we can avoid reinventing the wheel and learn from the hard experience of others. In August, we drove over to Sheffield to meet René Meijer at Food Works, an organisation that redistributes surplus food. Rene had a lot of practical suggestions for Eggcup and he was very generous in sharing the lessons he had learned. It was inspiring to see the project in action and to feel the sense of solidarity of people in another part of the [...]