Ocado has donated four refrigerated delivery vans to food banks in Hertfordshire and Warwickshire.
The online retailer has given two vans to community food project EdibleLinks in Atherstone, North Warwickshire, one to Feed food bank in St Albans and another to Dens night shelter in Hemel Hempstead.
The vans will allow the charities to receive fresh food, rather than being limited to tinned and non-perishable produces.
Ocado plans to give away more vans over the coming months as part of its ongoing partnership with food charities, which began with its Donate Food with Ocado scheme in 2014. The scheme allows customers to add charitable donations to their online trolley of £2.50, £5 or £10, which Ocado matches and puts towards food banks.
Since its launch, Ocado has expanded the initiative to donate customer-cancelled orders and has given 371 tonnes of food to charities across the country.
“We wanted to find a long-term, sustainable solution to the problem of wasted food in order to help reduce the large quantity thrown away in the UK, while providing a variety of fresh and ambient products to a worthy cause,” said Suzanne Westlake, head of corporate responsibility at Ocado. Wendy Lewington, CEO of Dens, said: “We are extremely grateful to Ocado for the donation of a refrigerated food van and we know just how much of a difference it will make for our new outreach programme, ensuring we can distribute fresh food to those who need it most.”
Heather Ryan, coordinator at Feed, added: “The donation of a refrigerated van will make a huge difference in helping us to deliver significantly more fresh and nutritious food to every person relying on us for essential meals.”