A total of 5785 meals were donated to the Somer Valley Foodbank to help local people by generous customers at Tesco stores in Midsomer Norton over Christmas.
The food donated is given in emergency food parcels to people referred because they cannot afford to feed themselves and their families.
The Foodbank is part of The Trussell Trust Foodbank network, and across the UK a total of three million meals worth of food has been donated to charities FareShare and The Trussell Trust thanks to the Food Collection that ran in Tesco stores until 2nd December.
Supermarket shoppers were asked to donate long-life items to help people in need as part of their usual shop with Tesco topping up the value of the customer donations by 20%.
Thanks to customers’ generosity and the Tesco top-up this year’s collection has seen over 3 million meals worth of food donated to help people in need.
It brings the overall total donated by Tesco shoppers since the Food Collection scheme began in 2012 to more than 49 million meals.
The 20% top–up donation provided by Tesco helps the charities in their work, by providing funding to run the foodbanks and distribute the food to those in need.
The Somer Valley Foodbank Manager, Paul Woodward, said: “Thank you so much to everyone who donated during the food collection – we rely on the support of Midsomer Norton, Radstock and surrounding area to make sure there is enough emergency food for people referred to us so we’re very grateful for the way the community pulled together in the lead up to this Christmas.
“Because of your support, in the last few weeks the foodbank has been able to help hundreds of local people – thank you.”
Samantha Stapley, Head of Operations at The Trussell Trust said: “Our foodbank network has spent the last month making sure that people referred to them with no money for food don’t go hungry this Christmas.
“This work has been made possible thanks to the incredible generosity of Tesco customers, store colleagues and volunteers during the Food Collection. Thank you for your support – your generosity has stopped hunger this Christmas.”
Tesco’s Head of Community Alec Brown said: “Every year we are taken aback by the generosity of customers who give to the Food Collection in our stores across the UK. We know that this annual collection makes a real difference in the Somer Valley area and we would like to thank everyone who has donated, volunteered or helped with the Food Collection in store.
“Food Collection is just one of the ways that Tesco has been supporting the two food charities. A donation to the charities has also been made for every fresh turkey sold in Tesco stores and for every pack of Tesco Finest Candy Cane flavoured crisps sold over the festive period.”
The supermarket’s clothing range F&F has also been selling festive-themed ‘hats with a heart’ with a donation of £1 from each hat split between FareShare and The Trussell Trust. More than 164,000 of the hats have been sold.