Many charities have been hard-hit by the COVID-19 crisis. Local charity, Brighton Permaculture Trust, have come up with a way to ensure the continuation of their scrumping project while supporting those who are unable to access food.
Supporters are being asked to donate to the charity to cover the wholesale price of their locally produced apple juice, usually delivered to outlets across the city. The juice will then be delivered to local food surplus charity FareShare, who organise the donation of surplus food to local charities and community groups.
“We had an abundance of juice ready to distribute to local cafés when the crisis hit.” explains the charity’s Director, Bryn Thomas. “With our regular outlets closed we began to think about other options, and with so many people struggling to access food it was a no-brainer”.
Brighton Permaculture Trust came up with the idea to make ends meet and bring some local flavours to Sussex residents when they donated some juice that was approaching its best-before date a few weeks ago.
The crisis has meant many people who were already struggling with food poverty have been unable to access the places they usually collect food from. Adding to this are the people who have lost their main source of income in recent weeks. As a result, local food surplus distribution charity, FareShare have seen demand increase by about 50% since the crisis hit.
“We are so grateful to Brighton Permaculture Trust for the Apple Juice that was donated to us here at FareShare Sussex. It will be redistributed within our network of 140 projects across Sussex and Surrey, and provide an authentically local product and a taste of Brighton's orchards to those who are most in need and socially isolated in these unusual times” – Oli Kyndt from FareShare.
The charity hope to raise enough money to donate between 1000-2500 bottles and will send six bottles for every £10 received (the wholesale price). One of the projects already benefiting from a donation is 'Food and Friendship' (formerly Hove Lunch Club). Food and Friendship help to tackle social isolation through their twice-weekly lunch club but during the COVID-19 crisis they have been cooking and delivering these meals instead, as well as providing food parcels.
Brighton Permaculture Trust produce around 10,000 litres of fruit juice a year from fruit that would otherwise go to waste. Each year volunteers help to collect the fruit from across the county, before it’s pressed and bottled at the Fruit Factory in Stanmer Park and distributed locally. If you’d like to support this initiative by Brighton Permaculture Trust head over to their website to donate today. The campaign will continue to run until they run out of bottles to donate.
Brighton Permaculture Trust also sell their apple juice, as well as cider and other produce, outside the Fruit Factory most weekends. They will also be accepting donations toward bottles for Fareshare in person, at social distance.
Brighton Permaculture Trust
Brighton Permaculture Trust is a charity that promotes greener lifestyles and sustainable development through design. The charity runs courses and events and applies permaculture principles to their projects.
The scrumping project harvests fruit that doesn’t make the supermarket grade from orchards in and around Brighton & Hove and transform it into delicious juices, jams and chutneys.
Most recently, they’ve expanded the scrumping project by building a straw bale structure in Stanmer Park to serve as scrumping headquarters.
Their work with fruits and orchards includes the reintroduction of heritage sussex varieties, creation of community and school orchards and maintenance of older orchards in Stanmer Park. Including the award winning Racehill Community Orchard.
The charity is run by an experienced team of volunteers and permaculturists, supported by a management group and trustees, and resourced through course/event fees, grants and donations.
More information about Brighton Permaculture Trust see: www.brightonpermaculture.org.uk
FareShare is the UK’s national network of charitable food redistributors, made up of 17 independent organisations. They take good quality surplus food from right across the food industry and get it to almost 11,000 frontline charities and community groups.
The food they redistribute is nutritious, in-date and good to eat. FareShare Sussex reaches charities across the Sussex and Surrey, including school breakfast clubs, older people’s lunch clubs, homeless shelters, and community cafes. Nationally, the organisation provides enough food to create almost a million meals for vulnerable people every week.