Harvesting hope at Perth Markets
Every part of the chain helping fresh produce avoid landfill and head to those in need
At 6.30am, while most of Perth is still asleep, our team of market volunteers burst into action. Their mission: to rescue as much fresh fruit and vegetables from landfill as possible.
Perth Markets is Western Australia’s only wholesale fresh food central trading market and our not-so-secret supporter. They generously lend us space so we can feed change, no strings attached – no rent, no electricity bills. Plus, Fresh Express Produce donates forklift services, making sure our mission doesn’t break the bank.
In our efforts to rescue good food, our supply chain manager Angela is on the frontline. Over 50 wholesalers, five regular donors, and a handful of occasional contributors make it a bustling hub of generosity. Angela works her magic with the growers and retailers on the ground, transforming their surplus or slightly wonky produce into a lifeline for someone in need.
Every day, we average six pallets – bananas, cauliflower, broccoli, apples – you name it. Mondays are extra special, as we scoop up what hasn’t found a home over the weekend markets.
By 11.30am, our truck rolls in to collect the produce and return to our Perth Airport branch where it is distributed across Western Australia.
But it’s not just about collecting; it’s about being smart. A new cycling system ensures we get our collection tubs back to suppliers pronto, and a waste station partnership helps us sort through the nitty-gritty.
Anyone can drop off produce at our hub. Imperfect? No worries. It doesn’t have to end up in landfill.
That’s the story of a day in the life of Perth Markets with Foodbank. We couldn’t do what we do without their support.
Published on Friday, 2 February 2024