Market supports project to cut food waste and save people money

A community project which aims to reduce food waste and save families money has teamed up with Bury St Edmunds market and Bury Rickshaw.

From Wednesday, some of the traders on the market will be donating left over fruit, vegetables and bread to The Best Before Project.

The food will be collected and transported at the end of every Wednesday market by the charity Bury St Edmunds Rickshaw where it will be sold at low cost by the not-for-profit organisation – a good size shopping bag can be filled for £1.

Traders and West Suffolk Council, which runs the market, have been looking to reduce food waste, and the opportunity to work with the Best Before Project and the Rickshaw charity, is the perfect solution.

John Griffiths, leader of West Suffolk Council, said: “West Suffolk council has been involved in helping both of these fantastic organisations to get established including through local councillors support from their locality budgets. The fact that they are now working together to help us and the market reduce food waste and also save families money, is brilliant news for us all.”

The Best Before Project Shop, in Elsey’s Yard, off Risbygate Street, educates people about the difference in meaning between the “best before” and the “use by” labels on food and drinks.

Roz Scott, from the Best Before Project, said: “The average family throws away around £700 of food each year. It is just mad, and a lot of it is simply down to people not understanding food labels. Food items that are past their ‘best before’ dates are perfectly fine to eat and drink. It is only when something is past its ‘use by’ date, that people should avoid consuming it.

“By working with the council, the market traders and Bury St Edmunds Rickshaw, we will be able to ensure that much of the fruit, vegetables, bread and other food items that might of otherwise been thrown away, can instead be sold at low cost to the local community through our shop saving people money and supporting some of the most vulnerable in our society.

“The Best Before Project and shop is here for everyone in our community. Many families and individuals are finding it difficult to make ends meet in these times and the project is working to get more donations, and volunteers, so we can open for more hours a week to help people and continue to work to reducing the millions of tonnes of edible food that go into landfill every year in the UK. If you would like more information or can help us please email; or call 07859 110 205.”

Sam Reid, Co-Chair of Bury St Edmunds Rickshaw, said: “We have been collecting surplus food for the Best Before Project since last winter and we’re delighted to do our bit to help prevent food waste. We’re looking forward to working with market traders who are supporting the project from today. It’s only a short ride to Risbygate Street, and an ideal job for our cargo bike.”

The Best Before Project Shop is open Tuesday from 10am to noon, Thursdays from 2.30pm to 4.30pm, and Fridays from 10.30am to 12.30pm, and for the first time it will be open from this Saturday from 10am to noon and every Saturday after.

For more on the Best Before Project see its Facebook page at or follow it on Twitter @BestBeforeBSE .

See its website

You can also contact the Best Before Project Shop by emailing

Any businesses interested in donating can also get in contact via the email address above.


Pictured above are John Griffiths, market trader Nicola Bond, Amanda Martin from Bury St Edmunds Rickshaw, market trader James Pollard and Roz Scott from the Best Before Project.

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