Food Waste | FareShare Food Charity

Food Waste


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FareShare’s exciting new Brisbane venture to create nutritious meals for Queenslanders is rapidly taking shape.

We now have the keys to our new Morningside facility– a former serum laboratory – close to Foodbank Queensland which will supply us with surplus meat and vegetables to cook with.

 FareShare’s Kellie Watson has relocated to Brisbane to transfer what we have learned in our Abbotsford kitchen to the Sunshine State.

Kellie inspects the Foodbank Queensland warehouse which will supply us with ingredients and distribute our cooked meals.

With research showing  more than 400,000 Queenslanders experience food insecurity, 50 per cent of them children, the need for food relief is paramount.

“We have draft plans to install 900m² of kitchen, two 45-pallet freezers, a 40-pallet cool room and 400m² of warehousing, “said Kellie. “We are aiming to maximise the use of existing infrastructure includings electrics, air-conditioning and refrigeration, and future-proof the development.

“We have finalised our equipment lists which include everything from automated meat dicers to pumpfill stations. The new mixing kettles (electric saucepans) will cook up to 300 litres at a time – double our capacity in Melbourne.”

FareShare  already has a waitlist of people ready to volunteer  in Brisbane. With their support, we  aim to cook 1.25 million meals in the first 12 months and ramp up to five million meals. Our food will include a line especially created for children informed by nutritionists.

Special thanks go to Wiley Industries, a Queensland company who design, build and maintain facilities for their assistance with this exciting project.

If you would like to volunteer or offer your business services to our new Brisbane kitchen, please contact us at


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Chef Chris Mitchison

Christmas may be over but food waste is acumulating for the unwary.

Our kitchen production manager Chris Mitchison has an ideal solution for leftover turkey. Here’s her recipe for Turkey Noel. For general tips on avoiding food waste this Christmas, please click here.

Turkey Noel

Back in the 70s,  my mother found a recipe in the English Women’s Weekly magazine for Christmas leftovers. It was called Turkey Noel and it was served on Boxing Day, very effectively using up the leftover turkey. It was absolutely delicious. I have modified it to reduce the amount of preparation required – after all who wants to cook again from scratch? Not me! Continue reading


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FareShare is expanding to Queensland to dramatically increase the number of free ready-to-eat meals available for Australians in need.

As Australia’s biggest charity kitchen, we have signed an agreement with Foodbank, Australia’s largest food relief organisation, to reduce food waste and fight hunger in Queensland.

Kellie contemplates the possibilities of creating nutritious meals in the Sunshine State where Foodbank rescues 40 tonnes of food a day

Using our experience garnered over 16 years in Melbourne, FareShare will establish a $4.5 million custom-built, production kitchen in Brisbane with the capacity to cook FIVE MILLION meals a year. Click here to take a virtual tour of the new kitchen.

Led by FareShare’s general manager Kellie Watson, the new high-volume kitchen aims to cook at least one million meals in its first year for Queenslanders in crisis.

The collaboration plays to both partners’ strengths, tackling food insecurity and Australia’s $20 billion food waste problem head on.

FareShare will focus on what we do best – adding value to rescued food by cooking it into free, nutritious meals. Foodbank will collaborate with the food industry and source ingredients  through its existing network. It will then distribute the FareShare meals through the 300 charities it supports in Queensland.

The second kitchen will open in 2018, creating 5,000 wholesome meals a day including casseroles, curries and stir fries. The meals are designed to be easily reheated with no need for full cooking facilities, making them ideal for highly vulnerable people.

Once established, the new production kitchen will have the capacity to supply additional cooked meals to New South Wales and the ACT. Continue reading


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FareShare is urging consumers to think carefully about food waste when shopping this festive season.

According to the Australian Retailers Association and Roy Morgan Research, Australians will spend an astonishing $19 billion on food in the lead up to Christmas. A significant proportion of this will be dumped.

FareShare rescues food that would otherwise go to waste and cooks 1.2m meals a year for people in need. However, much of the food left over from Christmas, such as cooked meat, cannot be donated for human consumption and ends up in landfill causing serious pollution.

FareShare CEO Marcus Godinho said it’s possible to enjoy a fantastic feast without waste through proper meal planning, storage and re-use of ingredients.

Landfill with bulldozer working, against beautiful blue sky full of sea birds. Great for environment and ecological themes

The ugly face of landfill

“Many of us fall into the trap of catering for far more people than we will actually have around the table. For example, you don’t need a whole turkey to feed a family of six – a turkey breast roll will be equally delicious.

“A careful menu to guide you through the festive season can help ensure everyone is catered for without creating needless waste.”

FareShare offers the following tips to cut food waste and the associated loss of energy, water and other resources.

  1. Create a shopping list tailored to the number of guests you are catering for or sharing with.
  2. Be creative about recycling any leftovers. Cooked meat makes for great sandwiches, casseroles, stir fries, salads etc. See our chefs’ recipes for suggestions.
  3. Refrigerate leftovers in appropriate containers to extend their lifetime.
  4. Know the difference between ‘use by’ and ‘best before’. The latter is a guide for optimum condition and doesn’t mean the food is no longer edible.
  5. Take advantage of holiday opening hours which make it easy to shop for last minute items.

Godinho said that while Christmas is a time of feast and celebration for most, there are thousands of Victorians struggling to put food on the table.

This year FareShare is catering for hundreds of vulnerable families who would otherwise miss out on a Christmas dinner.

“It is a tragedy that so much food goes to waste when people in crisis can’t afford nutritious meals,” said Godinho.


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FareShare undertook our biggest ever food rescue operation last night.

All seven food rescue vans and a crew of 15 volunteers and staff headed down to the Fine Food Australia Expo – Australia’s largest food trade show – to pick up the surplus at the end of the exhibition.convoyweb

The FareShare team collected 4.2 tonnes of edible food ranging from prime Angus beef to locally-harvested seaweed.

The massive haul included more than 2 tonnes of chilled and frozen food. Large quantities of cooking oil, pasta, flour crushed tomatoes, chia seeds, milk and yoghurt were also collected.

Within hours we were incorporating the ingredients into our free, nutritious meals which are distributed to more than 400 Victorian charities. Gourmet salad greens fresh off the truck from Hussey & Co. were added to this morning’s quiche mix.

We have shared some of the food not suitable for cooking with partner charities including Father Bob Maguire Foundation, Salvation Army 614, Northpoint Centre Food Pantry and Richmond Hill Foodbank.

As well as providing nutritious meals for hundreds of Victorians in hardship, the big rescue diverted tonnes of perfectly good food from landfill. A great result all round.



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FareShare’s vision to unblock a major bottleneck with a new warehouse is all go thanks to a wonderful response from our supporters and volunteers.

van jam WEB

Van jam: our new warehouse will end queues

We have now reached our fundraising target to make this transformative investment a reality. The new facility, likely to be located in the western suburbs close to major wholesale centres, will more than quadruple our freezer capacity and increase our food storage tenfold.
The new warehouse will mean we won’t have to pass on valuable donations – such as bulk quantities of fresh meat perfect for cooking – because we will have ample space to store it ourselves.

Our appeal raised an incredible $107,000. FareShare has also received substantial donations from Sargents Charitable Foundation, Perpetual Trustees, Campbell Edwards Trust and GW Vowell Foundation.

Generous pledges from the Ian Potter Foundation, Melbourne Market Lions Club, Commonwealth Government and Calvert Jones Foundation got this huge project over the line.

We thank everyone who has contributed to this dramatic expansion which will enable us to rescue another 750 tonnes of perfectly-good food each year. We are now exploring the best locations to maximise this opportunity.


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How much food do you waste?


We all love food – so why do we throw so much of it away? Join FareShare for a special screening of Just Eat It,  an award-winning documentary which attempts to answer the big question. Filmmakers and food lovers Jen and Grant dive into the issue of food waste from farm, through retail, all the way to the back of their own fridge. After catching a glimpse of the billions of dollars of good food that is wasted each year, they pledge to quit food shopping and survive only on discarded food. What they find is truly shocking…

Screening: Thursday, 30 July at 6:00pm at Cinema Nova, Lygon St, Carlton.
Tickets: $25 for adults, $20 concession (student/senior) including welcome drink.

Click here to book your ticket

See you there!


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Leading food rescue charity FareShare is urging Victorians to ditch the habits of the past in order to reduce the mountains of food that will be wasted over the Christmas break.

It is estimated that Australian households will spend $10 billion on food this Christmas, with around 35 per cent going to waste because of over-purchasing and lack of awareness about how easy it is to save uneaten food for another time.

FareShare CEO Marcus Godinho said that many people still cooked Christmas dinner like their parents did, buying huge amounts of food before December 25 out of habit, forgetting that families are smaller and many shops are now open on the day.

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