On Thursday 22 June, the new distribution centre of Foodsavers Antwerp officially opened its doors at Kielsbroek. The new location provides more space for high-quality and fresh food and reduces environmental impact by being close to local food producers. Through the close collaboration between Foodsavers and the online marketplace for food surplus, Get Wasted, Antwerp continues its focus on a high-quality and sustainable fight against food waste. Get Wasted is a project under the support of EIT Food. EIT Food is supported by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), a body of the European Union.
Foodsavers collects unsold vegetables, fruit, dry goods, and frozen products from supermarkets, businesses, and auctions to distribute them among 16 food assistance organisations and 5 social grocery stores in Antwerp. This year, they have already distributed over 281,000 kilograms of food surplus.
With the move to a modern distribution centre in a central location at Vroegmarkt and the partnership with Get Wasted, they are now further emphasising the high-quality and sustainable distribution of food surplus.
The new location is larger and has a large refrigerated warehouse, allowing Foodsavers to store more vegetables and fruit at the proper temperature.
"The number of visitors to aid organisations increased by nearly 20% in 2022. We want to be able to meet that rising demand for food with fresh products. There is a need for healthy food. In the new warehouse, we can efficiently store and distribute a lot more fresh products."
Positive impact on climate
The new location at Vroegmarkt literally reduces the distance between Foodsavers and some local food producers. The central location also means that Foodsavers' refrigerated trucks have to travel shorter distances, resulting in a significant reduction in CO2 emissions.
In addition, the close collaboration with Get Wasted provides additional opportunities to maximise the utilisation of food surplus.
Get Wasted is an online marketplace where local food producers can offer their surplus vegetables and fruit to large-scale kitchens. A great example from Antwerp is the surplus from Atelier Claessens, a specialist in cutting vegetables and fruit, which can be purchased by social enterprise Sense via Get Wasted and then used to make soups for schools.
"We are pleased that Foodsavers supports us in distributing both the food surplus and the finished products, for example, to schools.
"We want to expand the platform and help large-scale kitchens establish a circular operation with affordable and local food. In the next phase, we also want to expand our platform to include Antwerp's hospitality industry."
Get Wasted is a project of EIT Food and receives support from Vlaanderen Circulair and the Antwerp Climate Fund. After a successful pilot phase in 2022 with 4 Antwerp schools, the platform is now becoming a structural tool in a sustainable food strategy.
Out of the 26 employees of Foodsavers, 21 are individuals who have difficulty finding work. At Foodsavers Antwerp, a part of the social economy company Werkhaven, they receive training and gain work experience. This allows them to transition to the regular job market later on. The new location provides them with a realistic work environment and the appropriate facilities.
For more information, please contact:
Rebecca Van Remoortere, spokesperson for alderman Tom Meeuws
0498 78 21 44 email@example.com
Katrien Verbeke, Senior Business Developer Get Wasted
0476 93 50 95 firstname.lastname@example.org
About EIT Food
Get Wasted is a project under the support of EIT Food. EIT Food is the world’s largest and most dynamic food innovation community. We accelerate innovation to build a future-fit food system that produces healthy and sustainable food for all.
Supported by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), a body of the European Union, we invest in projects, organisations and individuals that share our goals for a healthy and sustainable food system. We unlock innovation potential in businesses and universities, and create and scale agrifood startups to bring new technologies and products to market. We equip entrepreneurs and professionals with the skills needed to transform the food system and put consumers at the heart of our work, helping build trust by reconnecting them to the origins of their food.
We are one of nine innovation communities established by the European Institute for Innovation & Technology (EIT), an independent EU body set up in 2008 to drive innovation and entrepreneurship across Europe.
Foodsavers is an initiative of the City of Antwerp that collects and redistributes surplus food, free of charge, to aid organisations working on food distribution.
To this end, the City of Antwerp collaborates with auctions, companies and supermarkets. Moreover, it actively seeks out companies and other providers to collect surpluses. Both one-off and structural collaborations are possible.
The initiative is recognised by the Federal Agency for the Safety of the Food Chain (FASFC) and guarantees that it respects the cold chain for perishable foods.