Oz Harvest WA officially launched in Perth recently, which is an exciting announcement albeit somewhat tinged with sadness. Sad in the sense that Perth still has people less fortunate that definitely need the helping hand that Oz Harvest will provide.
OzHarvest is the first perishable food rescue organisation in Australia collecting quality excess food from commercial outlets and delivering it, direct and free of charge, to close to 500 charities providing much needed assistance to vulnerable men, women and children…
OzHarvest is the only food rescue organisation in Australia collecting surplus food from all types of food providers including fruit and vegetable markets, supermarkets, hotels, wholesalers, farmers, stadiums, corporate events, catering companies, shopping centres, delis, cafes, restaurants, film and TV shoots and boardrooms.
OzHarvest was founded in November 2004 by Ronni Kahn, who was named Australia’s Local Hero of the Year in 2010.
Oz Harvest is Australia’s leading food rescue organisation. They partner with restaurants and cafes and when there is a surplus of food or ingredients, then the food is rescued! It gets picked up by Oz Harvest in shiny yellow vans and delivered to charities around town so they can be put to good use feeding the many hungry mouths in Perth. It was incredibly inspiring to hear from Oz Harvest’s founder Ronni Khan about how far the organisation has come and the high hopes for the help the group will be able to provide in Western Australia. They aim to change people’s thinking about food and I know I’m a culprit of some of the things Ronni talked about. Tending towards perfectly shiny tomatoes and apples with no bruises, for example. But when I think about it, a bruise really isn’t going to hurt anyone and I know my brief intro to this organisation has opened my eyes to trying to prevent food wastage whenever I can.
The work OZ Harvest does has a four-fold impact:
- Our food deliveries to charitable organisations enable them to provide a broad range of high quality food that was not available previously.
- Our food deliveries to charities enable them to redirect vital funding into education, rehabilitation and other programs, which directly benefit their clients.
- By ensuring that good food is being eaten rather than going to landfill OzHarvest is minimising food waste and saving our environment by preventing tonnes of carbon emissions from polluting the atmosphere.
- Our food donors benefit from reduced expenditure associated with the disposal of excess food, reduced food storage costs and the satisfaction of knowing they are making a valuable contribution to those in need in the local community.
There are lots of ways you can help out Oz Harvest. Donations are always welcome, you could volunteer or you could encourage your workplace to get behind their corporate strategy ‘Cook for a Cause’. Or as Christmas approaches and you are wondering what to get people, then keep the beautiful Oz Harvest cookbook in mind with 100 beautiful recipes from renowned Australian chefs. These recipes are aimed at making ingredients go that extra mile – living the food rescue mantra.
And if you know someone with a business that may have surplus food, then please encourage them to get in touch with Oz Harvest. A simple phone call can really help someone in need, if it means they don’t have to go to bed hungry.
Well done Oz Harvest. I hope your mission in WA goes extremely well and I feel confident that the generosity of West Aussies will help you along the way.