Unilever and the FEBA partner to address food waste and hunger in Europe.
London/Rotterdam, 1st December 2014 - Unilever today announces a three-year partnership with the European Federation of Food Banks (FEBA) to help address food waste and hunger across Europe.
More than 120 million people – nearly a quarter of the population of the European Union - is at risk of poverty or social exclusion while 17% live under the poverty threshold (1). At the same time, over 100 million tonnes of food in Europe is wasted annually.
Now, as the 30th anniversary of the first food bank in Europe is marked, Unilever is strengthening its support to the FEBA network with a supply chain support programme across Europe and a three-year partnership, providing:
- Enhanced product donations from local countries across Europe to fight food waste;
- Time and expertise from Unilever employee volunteers to support FEBA members in their food collection and distribution activities;
- A 100 000€ annual contribution from the Unilever Foundation to help in developing new food banks in Eastern and Southern Europe - where food poverty is a significant issue - and to strengthen existing ones, ensuring more food is reaching the right people at the right time and in the right way.
Neil Humphrey, Senior Vice President Supply Chain Europe, said: "Many are facing long term hardship and are struggling to feed their families with food banks playing an increasingly vital role. At the same time, Unilever is committed to tackling food waste. We believe we can help by donating not only our products but also expertise in areas such as logistics to ensure food reaches those that are most in need."
Isabel Jonet, President of the European Federation of Food Banks, said: "We are convinced that fighting food waste and poverty is only possible by working together and building partnerships with stakeholders. The long-term commitment announced by Unilever is a strong example of partnership in action which will deliver real benefit to the most vulnerable and needy by helping our food bank network to maximise its positive impact."
Unilever has been supporting FEBA members through in-kind contributions for several years in Europe. In 2013, Unilever donated approximately 3 million meals equivalent in 13 countries (2). While in 2014, 35,000 families in the Netherlands received hot meals prepared with Unilever products such as Conimex, Bertolli and Unox.
Local teams within Unilever will be encouraged to intensify their collaboration with National Federations of Food Banks part of the FEBA network. For example, Knorr in France will leverage its brand power by undertaking a marketing campaign that outlines that a donation to FEBA will be made for every product purchased at dedicated in-store operations.
(1) Source: Eurostat 2014
(2) Spain, Portugal, Netherlands, Belgium, Czech Republic, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, France, Italy, Poland, Slovakia and United Kingdom.