Cape Town - South Africa’s largest food redistribution and non-profit organisation Food Forward SA says the government must put in place a food donations policy, which will allow for the donation of non-sellable but still edible food.
The organisation believes it can solve food insecurity through its food banking model and has launched a petition in an effort to end hunger.
Speaking to Newzroom Afrika, Food Forward SA managing director, Andy du Plessis, said that they have launched the petition weeks ago and they have close 2 500 signatures, and they preparing to take the campaign up further in the new year.
“Essentially the campaign centres around mostly three important factors, that is, we want to create a set of guidelines around what safe donations look like. Secondly is liability protection for food donors and the third one is the date labelling issues.”
“These are three key drivers of food loss and waste in South Africa and so according to CSIR’s technical report of 2021 they have affirmed the research of 2013 and confirmed that over 10 million tons of mostly good edible surplus food is lost or wasted through through the supply chain such as the wholesalers and farmers.
Du Plessis says the cost of living crisis is escalating across South Africa and around 30 million people are food insecure, and children are dying of malnutrition and starving for weeks end. It’s an untenable situation in a country that has enough food to feed all its people.
“We want to make sure that the government hears our petition and we’ve now partnered with the Harvard Law School project, the Global Food Banking Network, the Legal Resources Centre in South Africa and the Consumer Goods of South Africa when we started.”
“We are going to present to the government with set of proposals around food donation policy and we are hoping that the government will sit down with us at the Office of the President,” Du Plessis said.
He also confirmed that last week when they met with the Department of Social Development they have expressed their support for food donation policy and they agreed with them it is a low -hanging fruit to address the problem of hunger in South Africa.
He further highlighted that they have conducted a survey with Consumer Goods of South Africa and they have found out that 76% of respondents say that if liability issues were taken away they would donate more surplus food.