Up to 40% of all food produced globally is wasted. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that Ireland generates approximately 750,000 tonnes of food waste every year. Not only is this a huge waste of resources that costs the country over €1.29 billion annually, but the associated greenhouse gas emissions resulting from the production and subsequent waste of that food is a significant contributor to climate change. FoodCloud is an award-winning charity tackling the twin issues of food waste and food insecurity to fight climate breakdown and poverty – and Dawsongroup tcs Ireland is supporting them with their cause.
Transforming Surplus Food into Opportunities
FoodCloud’s mission is to transform surplus food into opportunities to make the world a kinder place and to ensure that no good food goes to waste. They partner with retailers, food companies, non-profit organisations, the government, and the wider business community to redistribute surplus food and help drive progress towards a circular economy for food systems. Any surplus food that cannot be given to the community sector is transformed into spectacular meals in the FoodCloud Kitchen and their food truck delivers them to events and festivals, charities, and local communities. Any profits generated from the Kitchen are reinvested into FoodCloud’s core activities.
At the time of publishing, FoodCloud had redistributed more than 105,000 tonnes of surplus food through its technology platform and physical hubs, equating to over 250 million meals and saving almost 336,000 tonnes of CO2 equivalent. With such a busy redistribution schedule, FoodCloud relies on its crew of volunteers and its equipment, including vans, warehousing and cold storage.
Keeping FoodCloud Moving
FoodCloud has had a professional relationship with Christian Visser, Business Development Manager for Dawsongroup tcs Ireland, for many years. Christian has provided FoodCloud with trusted advice and support on refrigeration-related queries and issues on many occasions. When FoodCloud needed a refrigerated van urgently for transporting FoodCloud Kitchen chilled meals to their destination, they turned to Dawsongroup tcs Ireland for a solution.
“We couldn’t get a refrigerated van due to supply chain issues,” said Maggie Van Staden, FoodCloud’s Transport Coordinator. “We contacted Christian as he is very knowledgeable about refrigeration and transport. Incredibly, he was able to sort out a great van with full refrigeration very quickly so we could get our food trucks and kitchen out to the community. It was a brilliant solution.”
Inflatable Food Storage Solutions
A refrigerated van isn’t the only solution tcs Ireland has provided for FoodCloud. Their latest enterprise – the Growers’ Project – retrieves surplus produce that would usually be discarded at farm level and gives community groups located around the country access to those vegetables. Its successful trial last year saw 30 tonnes of food redistributed with the support of the Irish Government and Tesco. The full project has a target to redistribute 60 tonnes of produce that would not otherwise have been harvested or which might have been sent for animal feed, avoiding emissions of approximately 192,000kg of CO2 equivalent.
The team at Foodcloud needed somewhere to store this food before its redistribution and turned to Dawsongroup tcs Ireland. The solution came in the form of the Temp°store 26, which provides inflatable chilled temporary storage for the Growers’ Project, enabling FoodCloud to preserve the produce for longer and giving them the time to get it to charities in remote areas that they otherwise would not be able to reach.
“We weren’t aware that inflatable chilled storage was an option,” said Maggie. “When Christian suggested it, we jumped at the chance to use it. It’s a great solution and with it we will be able to prove the success of the Growers’ Project, enabling us to secure funding to build a permanent facility. We’re really looking forward to working with Christian and Dawsongroup now and in the future.”
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