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Tour de FoodCycle

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This September, FoodCycle Bristol Hub Leaders Alice, Cat and Hattie will be cycling from London to Paris and back (over 300 miles!) to raise money for FoodCycle.

The Challenge

As well as taking on this incredible challenge to raise valuable funds for FoodCycle’s projects, the trio aim to increase awareness about food waste along the way, showing how individual efforts to reduce waste can really make a difference.

To do this, the team will be taking their trusty bicycle trailers with them from FoodCycle Bristol in order to collect, distribute and cook surplus food along the way. To connect communities and raise awareness of food waste, they’ll be meeting up with people who are feeding bellies not bins in London, Brighton, Paris and Portsmouth – gleaning ideas and sharing stories, tips and experiences.

Le Tour de FoodCycle: The Plan

Alice, Cat and Hattie will begin their trip in South London on Saturday 5th September, where they will be putting on a pop up lunch with Brixton People’s Kitchen, and then volunteering with FoodCycle Peckham to help cook and serve a healthy three course dinner from surplus food for the community there.

The following day they will jump on their bicycles, attach the trailers and head down south for the annual London to Brighton bike ride. They’ll bring alongsome of the surplus surplus’ food collected with FoodCycle Peckham and Brixton People’s in the trailers, meaning that, when they get to Brighton, they’ll be able to redistribute whatever went uncooked the day before. To do this, they’ll be meeting with the Brighton Food Waste Collective, who will help them redistribute what they’ve brought from London to local charities around the city.

If that wasn’t enough, they’ll then hop on the ferry to Dieppe and head down to Paris, covering a further 130 miles! They plan to link up with the FSE Network and volunteer with various local food waste groups, redistributing surplus and raising awareness.

Then they’ll turn around and come all the way back again, finishing up with a big pop-up restaurant in Portsmouth with FoodCycle Pompey – all cooked by FoodCycle volunteers using reclaimed surplus food.

We caught up with the three intrepid cyclists to hear more about their challenge. Here’s what they had to say about their project back in Bristol, why they’re fundraising and what’s motivated them to get involved!

Why FoodCycle?

“FoodCycle is a charity with a simple yet incredibly powerful model that combines surplus food, volunteers and spare kitchen spaces, to tackle food waste, food poverty and social isolation.

“Along with the rest of the FoodCycle Bristol team and the many wonderful volunteers, we put on a three-course meal every week at Barton Hill Settlement. We’re also constantly spreading the FoodCycle message through education and outreach work in communities across the city of Bristol.

“We’re particularly excited for this challenge, as it’ll effectively link up three of FoodCycle’s projects – Bristol, Peckham and Portsmouth – as well as spreading the message of food waste far and wide, across the country and over the Channel.”

Why Paris?

  1. A new piece of legislation has recently been passed in France requiring supermarkets to donate surplus food to charities for redistribution. We want to see how they do things in France, and meet some of the organisations that redistribute surplus food in Paris – what do they think of the new legislation, and what impacts will it have on their organisations?
  2. In December 2015, Paris will host COP 21, ‘the Paris Climate Talks’. COP21 is a crucial conference, as it needs to achieve a new international agreement on the climate.  We want to demonstrate that the road to and from Paris is a sustainable one, full of community initiatives, innovative low carbon solutions. We want to encourage and inspire environmental action.
  3. Paris is pretty lovely, and cycling through the French countryside is definitely the best way to get there!

Why do we need your help?

We need your help because 15 million tonnes of food is thrown away in the UK every year, yet over 4 million people are affected by food poverty in the UK. We need your help to continue FoodCycle’s fantastic work, and help to improve and grow the FoodCycle network.

We need your help because individuals really can make a difference when they join together. That’s exactly why we’re doing what we’re doing – to reconnect communities and show people just what they can do to make a difference.

Please dig deep and show your support for these wonderful Hub Leaders as they embark upon this amazing challenge to raise awareness of food waste and food poverty across the UK and beyond – from Peckham to Portsmouth to Paris!

Want to get involved?

If you’d like to help out these fantastic fundraisers, there are lots of ways to get stuck in.

To donate, please visit their fundraising page. Every little helps!

You can join them at the Portsmouth Pop-Up restaurant for an evening of delicious food, live music, street art and activities by purchasing tickets here.

Or to help out at the pop-up, email Hattie and the team here.

If you’d like to meet up along the way to learn more about food waste, saving surplus or redistributing food, send an email to FoodCycle Bristol and they’ll get back to you asap.

Make sure you follow their progress on social media – they’ll be posting on Twitter from the account @foodcyclebriz and on their Facebook page as well!

By retweeting or sharing their story, you can help them raise awareness of their fantastic challenge and fight food waste, food poverty & social isolation in communities across the UK and on the way to Paris!

You can also hear the team on BBC Radio Bristol, where they spoke to John Darvall on Wednesday 26th August – 2hrs 12 mins into this recording.

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