Gopuff, the go-to platform for instant delivery of everyday essentials, teamed up with Great British Menu chef James Cochran and Too Good To Go—the world’s largest surplus food app and one of Time100’s most influential companies for 2022— yesterday on an ambitious ruse to challenge perception of food waste and inspire the public to take action.
Hosted at Cochran’s award-winning fine-dining restaurant in Islington, 12:51, some of London’s most discerning food experts were invited to enjoy a bonafide top-tier fine-dining meal that—unbeknownst to them—was made from rescued food waste.
The whole experience was captured on video, and is being released to mark yesterday’s Stop Food Waste Day, a national day of awareness which aims to educate and ignite action against food waste for the sake of our planet.
Everything the guests ate during the evening was about to end up in the bin; it was either surplus food that was rescued and redistributed via the Too Good To Go app, or food items that were past its Best Before date that were still salvageable. The ruse was revealed to the guests at the very end of the night to demonstrate how much potential deliciousness and quality produce is lost to the UK’s food waste problem every single day.
Re-distributed food items from some of the UK’s most popular food brands and Too Good To Go partners, including Gopuff, were transformed into the extravagant meal which included dishes such as “Confit egg yolk, potato foam, curried potato matchsticks, haddock rarebit on toast” and “Filo pastry tartlet, raw tuna, citrus hollandaise mousse, pickled chilli, apple gel, crispy shallots”.
The entire five course fine-dining tasting menu cost just £2.69 per person to make—the dessert itself costing just 16p—with the produce having been rescued from local stores at a third of its original retail value.
Showcasing the breadth of variety on the Too Good To Go app and the types of food waste that occur, the menu featured inventive transformations of surplus Gopuff produce including: apple gels using damaged apples; citrus mousses using leftover lemons; smoked salmon creme made from past its Best Before date creme fraiche; and stale bread turned into toasted breadcrumbs.
There were also zero-waste drinks via redistributed surplus stock from brands including Dalston’s Drinks, Coast Soda Water and 5 Points Brewing Co.
James Cochran, chef and co-founder of 12:51, says, “It’s been great to be a part of this project with Too Good To Go. No one likes throwing food away but sadly it does happen on a daily basis. I hope this event helps to inspire people at home to get creative in the kitchen and see how fun fighting food waste can be!”
Alberto Menolascina, General Manager of Gopuff UK, says, “’Stop Food Waste Day’ is a great way to draw attention to the important issues of food waste and inequality in our society, but these efforts shouldn’t rest only on one day. We are proud to partner with Too Good to Go from launch across the UK and Europe and in just six months, have redirected 46 tonnes of food – or more than 45,800 meals – that would have otherwise gone to waste in Europe. We remain committed to furthering our impact on this important issue.”
Jamie Crummie, co-founder of Too Good To Go adds, “Over 26,000 tonnes of food is wasted in the UK every day. Not only does that simply not make sense at a time when we’re all looking to save money on our food but it’s harming our planet too. Working with James and our partner brands on this project to showcase the true potential of food waste has been fantastic. We want to show that food waste does not mean food scraps, it can actually be delicious, exciting food that is truly worth saving. With food waste causing 10% of all global greenhouse gas emissions, it’s never been more important to take action against climate change and food waste is a great place to start. This Stop Food Waste Day I encourage you to take inspiration from our video and create your own food waste transformations.”