Donating store food is unworkable

The Co-operative Group has said it is unviable to distribute surplus in-date food produce to charities and good causes.

In a written answer to a question about food waste submitted by the South West Regional Board at the AGM, Director of Marketing Patrick Allen said the issue of distributing surplus food from stores is impractical due to the small amounts of in-date products available and the fact outlets usually have late closing times.

Mr Allen said food nearing the end of its shelf life is reduced at least three times and managers have the discretion to make further deductions (of over 75 per cent) to help clear items.

The most recent attempt to give away unsold in-date food was last year in Manchester, but the scheme proved unworkable.

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