Preventing food waste with a social purpose

Local community super markets impacting the neighborhood

Recently launched supermarkets in London and throughout the UK make surplus food more accessible to those in need.


“Community supermarkets” are now selling the surplus food donated from various mainstream supermarkets in the UK to be sold to struggling families. These are foods in which either packaging was damaged, wrongly ordered or mislabeled. Community Shops give the option to local members that need income support to buy food at a 70% discount rate. In addition to the discount, members are enrolled in a career development program that assist them in their job hunt and with a confidence boost. After the success of the pilot store with 25% of the participants finding jobs, the program is expanding throughout the UK. What makes the program so great is its combination of addressing the problem of corporate food waste, hunger in the lower socioeconomic groups and assistance/social service (inclusion) to these groups into the economy all at once. The social purpose motivates members to get back on their feet while not having to worry about the cost of food. The program includes a personally assigned mentor to that goes through that persons strengths and weaknesses along with a life plan to achieve goals. The program also includes CV-writing, confidence-building, and home-budgeting courses.


Another example of community supermarkets is The People’s Supermarket in London

Photo by Habier López

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