Can a social platform help use surplus food?

Lidl will donate up to 2 million meals per year to feed people in need. By partnering with Neighbourly, the award-winning social platform, Lidl is able to ensure that the local community benefits from its food surplus. By enabling stores to team up with charities, organisations such as food banks and homeless shelters are able to collect quality leftover produce from stores every day.

How Lidl UK is helping communities in Scunthorpe with food surplus from Neighbourly on Vimeo.

Food waste and hunger

Food waste is a significant sustainability challenge for food retailers such as Lidl. In the United Kingdom, £13bn worth of food is discarded annually by retailers and households, including 44% of bread and 40% of bagged salad. Meanwhile, despite being the seventh richest country in the world, many people in the United Kingdom struggle to afford food, meaning that food poverty is on the rise.

Linking neighbours

Neighbourly is the social network that connects neighbours. Thanks to Neighbourly, Lidl stores can identify local food banks, community cafes and soup kitchens to whom it can distribute its unsold surplus food. Following a successful 8 week pilot that helped feed more than 3,400 people across community centres, children centres, elderly care centres and housing support projects in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire, stores are being linked region by region to their local communities. By creating local connections, transportation costs are reduced as volunteers can help redistribute food locally, without accruing unnecessary food miles.


The discounter has also signed up to Neighbourly’s #Fundafridge campaign, pledging to donate more than 100 fridges and freezers so that the often under-resourced charities it partners with are able to store its surplus food safely, further reducing food waste.

About Lidl

German discount supermarket Lidl UK operates over 650 stores across the United Kingdom, employing 20,000 people. Lidl provides its customers with the highest quality products at the lowest possible prices. It is passionate about sourcing locally where possible, with 70% of its products coming from British suppliers.

This story exemplifies how Lidl UK supports Sustainable Development Goal 2: Zero Hunger, specifically target 2.1: “End hunger and ensure access to food by all.”

Commitments, Actions and Progress from Lidl UK

Learn more about Lidl UK and Neighbourly.

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