Co-op x Your Local Pantry_1292_Big Zuu & Miguel Barclay inside pantry

Source: Co-op

Big Zuu and Miguel Barclay will be featured on the live stream

Co-op is pulling its traditional Christmas advert this year to focus on a nationwide community-led food initiative.

It is instead channelling the advert funding into a wider cost of living support project for its colleagues, members, customers and communities.

The convenience retailer will be hosting a live cooking stream at Peckham’s Your Local Pantry with TV chef and rapper Big Zuu. He will be sharing useful cooking tips and how to make groceries go further, alongside TV chef, presenter, and author of One Pound Meals, Miguel Barclay. Co-op members and volunteers will also be joining.

The live stream will be broadcast across Big Zuu’s Instagram at 7pm today, 16 November.

The activation comes as The Co-op recently partnered with Your Local Pantry to ease the strain on household finances during the cost of living crisis.

The partnership, which is funded by Co-op Members, means the Your Local Pantry network will be able to triple within three years from 75 to 225 pantries across the UK, with the addition of 150 new pantries.

The pantries act in a similar way to an ordinary store, stocking a wide range of food including fresh fruit & veg, frozen and chilled food, meat and dairy products, and long-life tinned and packaged food.

To gain access to the goods, Your Local Pantry members pay a subscription fee, ranging from £3.50 to £6.50 per week depending on location, which will allow them to choose groceries that are worth “many times more”. Anyone can become a member of Your Local Pantry.

“Whilst many of our competitors are adapting their Christmas ads to reflect the mood of the nation in a cost-of-living crisis, we are going further by pulling our ad altogether,” said Co-op Group CEO Shirine Khoury-Haq.

“In doing so we will be shining a light on the need to support vital community causes, throughout the year and not just at Christmas, especially with a deep recession looming.

“Our unique Co-op membership continues to drive our thinking, and through our members’ incredible support we are able to channel our resources and make local differences in ways no others can match. Through their ongoing commitment we can make society fairer and more co-operative.”

Your Local Pantry network development coordinator James Henderson added: “Pantries are fantastic places. They bring people together around food, soften the impact of high living costs, and strengthen the power and potential of neighbourhoods.

“Communities have long wanted to improve food security while upholding dignity, choice and hope, and pantries are a proven win-win solution. We’re really excited to be teaming up with the Co-op, so another 150 neighbourhoods can open Pantries of their own.”