FareShare operates a fleet of refrigerated vans in Victoria which collect surplus and donated food from supermarkets, wholesalers, manufacturers and farmers. This includes meat, eggs, dairy and vegetables which we cook into free, nutritious meals. In Brisbane, Foodbank supplies our kitchen with surplus food including significant quantities of meat and vegetables. We add value to this food by cooking it into balanced, ready to eat meals.
FareShare cooks rescued food at scale. Over nearly two decades we have developed efficient processes to cook more than 5,000 meals a day with a volunteer workforce. We ensure our meals are packed with protein and fresh vegetables to provide vulnerable people with as much nutrition as possible. Our ready to eat meals include curries, pastas, casseroles, soups, tagines and braises. Our Melbourne kitchen also prepares a popular line of savoury pastries such as sausage rolls, vegetable rolls, quiches, and egg and bacon pies. Cooking is supervised by experienced chefs in modern, production kitchens.
FareShare operates three kitchen gardens in Melbourne to help us secure sufficient vegetables for our meals. The gardens are tended by volunteers under the direction of a kitchen garden manager and produce about 40 tonnes of vegetables a year. Crops grown include zucchini, carrot, eggplant, pumpkin and sweet potato. All vegetables harvested in the kitchen gardens are brought back to the kitchen to be added to our meals, supplementing what we are able to rescue.
FareShare’s meals are distributed free to people experiencing food poverty and unable to afford nutritious food. In Victoria our meals are handed out by more than 400 charities including soup vans, homeless shelters, women’s refuges, schools serving disadvantaged communities, and RSLs. Meals cooked in our Brisbane kitchen are distributed by Foodbank to its existing network of frontline charities supporting people doing it tough. For many people, a FareShare meal will be the only meal of the day and we therefore do everything possible to make it count nutritionally.