The Real Junk Food Project Edinburgh is a proud associate of the charity of the same name, founded in Leeds in 2013, and now an expanding and exciting UK-wide network of cafés and communities.
We raise awareness of the issue of food waste, help people to eat and cook better and instigate change towards a more sustainable, efficient and just food system.
We intercept perfectly edible food that would otherwise go to waste and serve it in creative ways in our pop-up cafes and community dinners across the city. We aim to work with small local businesses and producers to source food, to help them minimise their environmental waste impact, while feeding people and creating community.
We operate a Pay As You Feel (PAYF) policy, enabling everyone and anyone to eat together. The nature of these contributions may vary depending on the event, but generally people are encouraged to contribute in any way they feel able and appropriate, financially or otherwise. We hope this will also encourage a different way of thinking about the value of food as a resource.
Our events are run by volunteers and we provide learning opportunities with a focus on avoiding waste and eating responsibly. The majority of funds raised are invested in training, equipment, and operating costs, with any surplus donated to local, food-related, democratically-selected charities.
We are developing strong relationships and a network of support from local businesses and projects. Since we started in 2015, we have delivered pop-ups in different venues, carried out food demonstrations, worked with schools, and provided catering for many different types of events in order to attract and build diverse communities.
We always welcome new volunteers on the team.
We’re open to collaboration and if you’ve got an idea for what we could work together on, let us know below and we’ll discuss at our next volunteers’ meeting!
We hope in the long-term for such projects to be commonplace, creating training programmes to help local communities set up their own community cafes based on a similar ethos. Rather than eliminating ‘waste’ from the food system, we aim to build a resilient alternative system which deals with surplus sustainably and in which people are no longer consumers but food citizens, actively and confidently managing their food choices.
If you are interested in finding out more, either about our general news or receiving volunteer updates, then sign up to our mailing list here. While you’re waiting for the next one, you can have a look at our previous newsletters here.
For specific questions, find us on Facebook or fill in the form below!