A Foodbank Powered by the Community
A nonprofit food bank aims to reduce food waste and support charities through community-based collaboration.
Hong Kong, being the culinary capital of Asia, upholds high food safety standards and adopts best practices in the food industry and waste management.
Feeding Hong Kong embarked on its journey when its British founder, Gabrielle Kirstein, started connecting local bakeries with surplus food to nearby local crisis shelters. With a true passion for serving the community, she established the organisation in 2011, and it has steadily grown since then. This Hong Kong-registered charity aims to fight hunger in the city and reduce the amount of quality food sent to landfills.
Offering a business-to-business (B2B) food bank service, Feeding Hong Kong collects high-quality, nonperishable food surplus from restaurants and food companies and sorts and stores it. Then, it redistributes it to more than 150 welfare organisations across the city, serving a broad and diverse group of people. It is also committed to raising public awareness of poverty and food insecurity as well as promoting healthy eating. Leveraging its unique capabilities and concerted efforts of the community, the organisation plans to ramp up its operation to meet the social demand.
Fostering Sustainability in Hong Kong
The government and Feeding Hong Kong have a shared goal to contribute to sustainability and green living. The Waste Blueprint for Hong Kong 2035 was promulgated in early 2021, advocating the government’s vision of “Waste Reduction • Resources Circulation • Zero Landfill”. In addition, it launched a series of programmes, such as the Food Wise Hong Kong Campaign and Food Wise Eateries, encouraging the entire community, from individuals to commercial sectors, to avoid and reduce food waste generation.
Billy Yeung, Chief Executive Officer of Feeding Hong Kong, said, “Beyond a shadow of a doubt, the government plays an indispensable role in steering food waste management and reducing food waste at source. Hong Kong, being the culinary capital of Asia, upholds high food safety standards and adopts best practices in the food industry and waste management. Strictly adhering to global food standards, we are on a mission to deliver quality food surplus to charities through our extensive distribution channels. We collaborate with different non-governmental organisations (NGOs), corporations and community partners to maximise impact and contribute to the city’s sustainable development.”
Helping More People with Smart Technologies
Recently, Feeding Hong Kong has increased its logistics and warehouse capabilities to support its service expansion. The organisation handled more than 1,300 tonnes of food last year, which is 120 times more than the team collected when it was first established in 2011. “We understand the pandemic affected global supply chains and food prices and prompted more people to ask for food assistance. We are very grateful to be able to help more people here.” Yeung added, “We have also utilised smart technologies to develop a virtual food drive and advance our online volunteer enrollment system, as well as reached out to different prospective donors.”
“When talking about what we need, I like to mention the three Fs: food, funds and friends. Hong Kong people remained generous to the needy during the pandemic, demonstrating that the city’s can-do spirit lives on. Our supporters from all walks of life were delighted in the knowledge that they were not only helping feed vulnerable people but also protecting our environment.”
Feeding Hong Kong runs territory-wide education programmes and provides an online toolkit for teachers and students to understand food waste and food insecurity better. Yeung concluded, “We believe education is crucial to creating positive social change apart from a supportive government and community. Together, we can harness the power of Hong Kong to create a better future.”
- Supported more than 150 charities with a total of 16.5 million meals for vulnerable people since its establishment
- An accredited member of the Global Food Banking Network, an international organisation dedicated to creating and strengthening food banks and national food bank networks
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