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Chamber and committees

Question reference: S6W-24991

  • Asked by: Maurice Golden, MSP for North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
  • Date lodged: 30 January 2024
  • Current status: Answered by Lorna Slater on 21 February 2024


To ask the Scottish Government how much food has been redistributed through the Food Redistribution Matchmaking Service since 2020.


As set out in the Food Waste Reduction Action Plan (2019), the Food Redistribution Matchmaking Service was intended to support linking up redistributors, producers, retailers, and wholesalers to access food surpluses and redistribute.

The matchmaking service commenced in July 2020. However, the COVID-19 emergency response led to several similar informal networks and new collaborations, often supported by the local authority, to ensure food surplus was redistributed. For this reason, the matchmaking service provided by Zero Waste Scotland had low levels of engagement. Rather than developing an alternative service, Zero Waste Scotland directs organisations with a food surplus to the FareShare Surplus with Purpose scheme.

In 2021-22, Scottish Government’s direct funding of £200,000 to FareShare’s Surplus with Purpose supported 1,001 tonnes of surplus food from Scottish growers being redirected to communities across the UK. This made the equivalent of 2.3 million meals.