Fighting food waste: Gousto and DPD pioneer scheme to tackle food waste in supply chain

  • Recipe box Gousto launches first of its kind food redistribution scheme with DPD and FareShare
  • Initiative designed to scale with Gousto’s expansion, helping eliminate waste and feed those in need 

In a first for the meal kit category, recipe box Gousto has launched a pioneering scheme with courier partner DPD, to combat food waste within the supply chain.

The scheme sees DPD drivers facilitate the rerouting of any failed box deliveries to the surplus food redistribution charity, FareShare. The food is then donated to charities and community groups who provide meals and support to vulnerable people all across the UK.

Launching initially as a trial at DPD sites, the scheme will support Gousto’s commitment that no usable waste ends up in landfill or incineration.

This comes as Gousto expands its fulfilment network, opening two new fulfilment centres by the end of next year to help deliver more boxes to homes across the UK, as demand for its meals continues to increase. 

Sally Matthews, Chief Product Officer at Gousto said this of the partnership: “Food waste is a huge issue within the traditional grocery supply chain. We’re proud to operate with less than 1% surplus food but there’s always more to be done.

By partnering with suppliers like DPD who share our ambitions to create a more sustainable supply chain, and with the help of amazing charities like FareShare, we can make a real difference. There are no excuses for inaction and we hope others in the industry will set up similar operations.”

Gousto and FareShare first began working together in December 2020 to redistribute usable surplus food from Gousto’s fulfilment centres to people in need. Since then, the recipe box company has donated 78.7 tonnes of surplus food, which FareShare have successfully redistributed to 1,629 charities across the UK. That’s equivalent to 187,402 meals for people in need. 

Food waste is already kept to less than 1% surplus in the Gousto fulfillment centres, thanks to AI technology predicting weekly order volumes to prevent over-ordering from suppliers. 

Last month, findings by environmental services company Foodsteps, revealed that due to a shorter supply chain and reduced food waste, dinners from leading recipe box Gousto, produce 23% less carbon emissions than equivalent meals from supermarket stores. Rather than use its own delivery fleet, Gousto works with the UK’s existing courier network to further save on CO2 emissions.

At least 270,000 tonnes of food fit for consumption is wasted by the UK food industry every year, equivalent to 650 million meals. In the last year alone, FareShare was able to redistribute  55,000 tonnes of food to frontline charities and community groups, providing the equivalent of nearly 132 million meals to vulnerable people.

Olly Craughan, Head of CSR at DPD commented: “We’re thrilled to have taken our day to day operations with Gousto to the next level, allowing us to redistribute surplus food to FareShare and those in need, whilst combating waste. We’re looking forward to scaling the operation moving forwards and encourage others to follow suit.”