• Tue. May 21st, 2024

New cafe in Bicester aims to reduce food poverty and waste

Byoxfordnewspaper

Oct 12, 2022

A new cafe is taking surplus food from businesses and using it to make tasty meals for customers.

The Open Doors Cafe is coming to Bicester on October 14, 2022.

Launched by the Bicester Food Bank and held at the Methodist Church on Sheep Street, the new pop-up cafe will offer a different three-course menu every Friday.

Read more: Restaurant hit with zero-out-of-five food hygiene rating

Meals will be made primarily with in-date ingredients donated by Oxfordshire businesses that would otherwise have gone to waste, freshly prepared and served by a group of local volunteers.

In the UK alone, some 9.5 million tonnes of food are wasted annually, while in 2020 to 2021, around 4.2 million people were living in food poverty.

The Open Doors Cafe is part of a movement of community action making a positive difference.

Food Bank Manager Emma Salisbury said: “Food waste is a growing issue, yet many people don’t have enough good food to eat.

“Our cafe is designed to help people gain access to nutritious, affordable food at a time when families are struggling with the rising cost of living.

“We’d like people from all walks of life to come along and enjoy a good meal while helping to tackle food poverty.”

Customers can choose one or more courses from the cafe’s weekly three-course meal, and pay what they feel the meal is worth.

The funds will go back into improving the cafe and expanding the service it offers to local people.

Most of the ingredients for the weekly menu will be sourced from the Oxford Food Hub, Oxfordshire’s main distribution centre for surplus food.

The hub collects food from local supermarkets, retailers and restaurants and redistributes it to hospices, shelters and other food charity services across the county.

The new Open Doors Cafe will be open every Friday from 12pm to 1.30pm at the Methodist Church on sheep Street, Bicester.

The Bicester Food Bank website states: “We don’t think anyone in our community should have to face going hungry.

“That’s why we provide three days’ nutritionally balanced emergency food and support to local people who are referred to us in crisis.

“We are part of a nationwide network of foodbanks, supported by The Trussell Trust, working to combat poverty and hunger across the UK.”

The Trussell Trust supports communities and churches to open foodbanks across the UK.

The trust has a network of 428 foodbanks.

The Foodbank Network was founded in 2004 after four years of developing the original foodbank based in Salisbury.

Since then, The Trussell Trust has helped communities work together to launch foodbanks nationwide in a wide range of towns and cities.

Read more from this author

This story was written by Matthew Norman, he joined the team in 2022 as a Facebook community reporter.

Matthew covers Bicester and focuses on finding stories from diverse communities.

Get in touch with him by emailing: Matthew.norman@newsquest.co.uk

Follow him on Twitter: @OxMailMattN1

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