Blenheim Palace and Searcys are joining the fight against food waste with the help of an innovative app. It has been estimated that over 10 million tonnes of food with a value of £17 billion is being thrown away every year in the UK. Launched in Copenhagen in June 2016, ‘Too Good To Go’ is the world’s largest food waste fighting app, connecting businesses with unsold food, to local consumers who purchase, collect and eat it.
Searcys, Blenheim’s catering partners, will be offering ‘Magic Bags’* filled with £12 worth of food for just £4 at the end of each day. The bags, which can be purchased at any time via the app, can then be collected from 4pm. All the food is fresh, just not bought by customers that day, so is all too good to go! This reduces the accumulation of food waste on each of the 364 days Blenheim Palace is open.Each bag will contain a selection of Blenheim’s high quality and sustainably sourced foods, including homemade cakes, sandwiches, pastries, as well as breads, fruit and salad boxes.Participants will need to download the free app, make their purchase and then show their receipt on the app at the main gates between 4pm – 5pm to gain entry to the Blenheim Estate. The Oxfordshire Pantry is located in the Visitor Centre, where the bags can be collected.
Nearly 90% of ingredients used by Searcys in the cafes are sourced within a 25-mile radius of the Palace, supporting local producers and growers.
Jacqueline Gibson, Blenheim’s Sustainability Advisor, said: “Our latest monthly waste report showed a 98% diversion from landfill figure, and we are confident that working with Too Good To Go will help to further reduce our overall waste figures. Currently, food waste feeds a local anaerobic digester plant in Cassington, providing renewable energy for the local community, however reducing waste at the outset remains a priority across all our waste management practices,” she added.
The app is part of Blenheim’s sustainable procurement policy. All disposable cutlery and cups are 100% compostable, in an effort to omit the use of single-use plastics. In 2018 Blenheim signed up to the ‘plastic-free community’ where businesses in the village of Woodstock have committed to phasing out single-use plastics and they are also part of ‘Plastic Free July’, a national campaign to reduce plastic pollution.Earlier this year Searcys at Blenheim switched the packaging in its sandwich and baguette range to a 100% biodegradable cellulose material to further reduce carbon dioxide emissions in the food sector.Read more by the Oxford Times.
About Too Good To GoToo Good To Go is the world’s largest food waste fighting app. They connect businesses with unsold food available to local consumers who purchase, collect and enjoy it. Too Good To Go operates in 12 countries and has saved over 18 million meals globally for more than 25,000 partners. In the UK, over 800,000 meals have been saved to date.Too Good To Go is part of the Courtauld Commitment 2025, which brings together leading organisations working towards the UN’s goal of halving food waste by 2030. It has also committed to the WRAP Food Waste Reduction Road map, which aims to reduce business food waste in the UK, as well as signing the Step Up to the Plate pledge launched by the UK Government’s Food Surplus and Waste Champion, Ben Elliot.
*A ‘Magic Bag’ in this initiative is filled with leftover items at random rather than specific foods selected by the customer. The bag may contain all sweets or all savouries and allergens may be present.
This reflects the unknown nature of what will be leftover at the end of any given day and the seasonality of the menu.
Too Good To Go App is available to download for free,