A story of saving & offering … 800 tons of fruit and vegetables

Mon 24 October 2022

When we took our first steps in 2011 with the “Saving & Offering Food” program, saving leftover food and offering it to charitable organizations, we also started to record other places where food waste was taking place.

Our goal was to see how we could intervene systematically, and always with a view to safeguarding the dignity of beneficiaries. The ultimate aim was to reduce food waste and environmental burden, and to increase food support. And in this way, we found that there was a great deal of waste of highly nutritional products in farmers’ markets.

Fully usable fruits and vegetables ended up in the trash because, unfortunately, they remained unsold at vendors’ stalls.

What we tried to “correct” in an organized and systematic way, was to save even the last fruit and vegetable and to offer it to our fellow humans experiencing food insecurity.

The beginning of our “Boroume at the Farmers’ Market” happened in 2015 at farmers’ markets in Vyrona, Gyzi and Panormou, where a small team of our volunteers saved, in just a few hours, several dozens of kilos of leftover fruits and vegetables and offered them to a charitable organization in the area. 

From then on, within seven years, we have saved and offered over 800 tons of produce of high nutritional value from 32 farmers’ markets in Athens and Thessaloniki.

Of course, none of this would have been possible if this initiative of ours had not been “embraced” by the vendors at farmers’ markets, who have been continually at our side over the last seven years and whom we heartily thank.

We also thank our 1,500 volunteers from Greece and abroad and the 40 companies that have not only demonstrated their incredible desire for social contribution, but at the same time have shown in practice that we can, in a very short time and in the simplest way, do something that is very important for society and for our environment.

Finally, heartfelt thanks to The Hellenic Initiative Australia, without whose support since 2015, all of the above would have been just a dream and not a tangible reality.