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Friday 18th March 2016

Whether it’s using social media, updating our website or recycling unwanted WEEE, it’s amazing how much technology influences how we work at Paper Round. And now, there’s a pioneering new app based all around food waste. OLIO is a free app that allows neighbours to connect with one another and local shops and cafes so surplus food can be shared, instead of thrown away. Public, private, commercial, residential, anyone can use the app, and it’s all in the name of food waste.

Angel Food Bakery in Brighton has been using the app to advertise unsold cakes and treats at the end of the day. Owner Claire Tymoshyshya explained to ITV how easy it was to use, being able to post food in under a minute, and that someone’s collected every time she has put food up. Just browsing through the OLIO website, you can see the types of things that are being put up for collection, Teabags, dog food, yoghurts and “poncy cranberry sauce” are just some of the items listed.

Much of the controversy around supermarkets throwing away food has been centred on best before dates; with OLIO you can add items past their best before date if you are willing to eat it yourself. Even items past their use by date can be added by individuals, but retailers are legally not allowed to do so. 

To add food, you open the app, take a picture, add a description and post when and where it’s available to be picked up from. You can browse available items near you and arrange pick ups via private messaging. OLIO believe that “small actions can lead to big change. Collectively, one rescued carrot or cupcake at a time; we can build a more sustainable food future.”

So, in the spirit of spring cleaning, download the app, open up your cupboards, and see what you can post. Who knows, whilst you’re posting, your neighbour might have that missing ingredient you need for tea tonight!

At Paper Round, whilst we will always happily collect food waste, we whole heartedly support the idea of edible food not going to waste in the first place. In support of this, we donate 25p per food waste collection to food waste charity, FareShare.  25p is all it takes for FareShare to take surplus food from supermarkets and redistribute it to breakfast clubs, homeless hostels and women’s refuges.

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