This year, the retailer is starting its annual drive with more than 2 million meals already banked through generous contributions from key partners - including legacy partner, Tru-Cape.
With 30 million food-insecure South Africans, it's easy to understand that hunger and food insecurity is a very serious issue. According to data from Stats SA for January 2023, food inflation has hit a 14-year high at 13.4%, while a study from the University of Witwatersrand's School of Physiology determined that 1 in 5 South African households don't have enough food to eat. 20% of South African households are food insecure, mostly residing in the Eastern Cape. Given these stats, a mere 56c could make an impact this May.
"With over 2 million meals already banked, we’re kicking off in a big way this year, and it makes sense as food vulnerability in South Africa is dire,” says Kate Marais, CSI manager for Food Lover's Market.
“Over the last six years, the Food Lover’s Market Hunger Month Campaign has raised 6,190,063 meals donated, with 2,515,203 of these meals donated in 2022 alone - but this is not enough, and we can do better.”
“Last year we had some incredible support from our customers, including Steelcrest High School pupils in Middelburg who came together independently to fundraise for the campaign, and the University of Johannesburg sports students who raised 7,500 meals. This spirit of Ubuntu has been pivotal to the campaign's success year-on-year,” says Marais.
Last year, Food Lover’s Market and its partners changed their approach to collecting meals by making a large upfront contribution - this year, the upfront contribution has more than doubled. With Tru-Cape as the biggest donor, Food Lover’s Market's in-store Hunger Month campaign is supported by long-standing suppliers in both our fresh and groceries departments.
FoodForward SA, the beneficiary of Hunger Month and Food Lover's Market's year-round CSI partner, accepts nutritious surplus food donated by supermarkets and farms. This food is then distributed to the 2,750 beneficiary organisations that feed 985,000 people daily across all nine provinces. These beneficiary organisations include charities and schools to help children and families, the elderly, the homeless, and more.
Andy Du Plessis, MD of FoodForward SA, says, "This year will be the seventh consecutive year that FoodForward SA is privileged to be the beneficiary NPO of Food Lover’s Market’s World Hunger Month campaign. What an incredible journey it’s been, joining hands with Food Lover’s Market in the fight against hunger, along with their suppliers and customers, to ensure the success of an annual initiative that enables FoodForward SA to distribute nutritious meals to nearly a million vulnerable people a day, across all nine provinces. We call on all South Africans to support this year’s World Hunger Month campaign at Food Lover’s stores nationwide and help us continue the fight against hunger.”
Says Marais, “The bar has been set very high this year, and we aim to reach and exceed it. If ever there was a time to act, that time is now. Food inflation is biting, unemployment is at an all-time high, and our fellow South Africans cannot feed themselves. Join us in feeding more South Africans - from our table and yours.”