Food surplus and Labour, the Valorisation of Underused Resources | 2 Mers Seas Zeeën


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Food surplus and Labour, the Valorisation of Underused Resources

Priority Axis

Technological and Social Innovation

Specific objective

Social Innovation

Lead partner

Herwin vzw


Start Date


End Date


Project budget

4 330 113

ERDF amount

2 598 068

ERDF rate



    Common challenge

    The entire programme area is struggling to prevent food waste and across the area the number of people experiencing food insecurity is increasing. This project will tackle this challenge through the valorisation of food surplus whilst simultaneously creating jobs, pathways to employment and supporting people living in food insecurity. It will find new models to make the interception and redistribution of surplus viable. The food industry did not find an answer to their huge amounts of food surplus, by no means to keep it for human consumption, principally because of the labour-intensive super flexible approach needed to do so. In this project, we will work to develop socio-economic business models with environmental benefits to do so.

    Main Achievements

    In the 2Seas area tons of food are wasted on a daily basis and the number of people experiencing food insecurity is increasing. Moreover, still a lot of people far from the labour market struggle to find meaningful jobs. Flavour turns this challenge into an opportunity by giving new life to food surplus, either by redistributing it to people in vulnerable situations or by processing it into new foods with longer shelf life. Covid19 caused unprecedented challenges with an impact on everyone, also on the pilots within Flavour.

    Five food distribution pilots are collecting food surplus at farms, supermarkets, auctions and food companies. They collected and distributed approximately 2300 tonnes of food surplus, more than 40% of which is fruit and vegetables, reaching over 50 000 people in food insecurity. Panier de la Mer started focusing on brokering food surplus between food companies and social organisations gaining a lot of credibility in Northern France, growing the collaboration pilot. Over 100 tonnes was distributed this way to 25 social organisations in the region.

    In November Feedback gleaned over a ton of pumpkins, the kick off of their processing pilot. Look forward to delicous Pumpkin soup. Its inspired by the Panier de la Mer fish soup which Phil could taste at the meeting in France. Not only pumpkins are surplus in Sussex, Fareshare Sussex also collects huge amount of fruits and veggies. With BHFP they'll create a healthy snack , fruit leather.

    This activity makes it possible for pilots to create new job opportunities suitable for people far from the labour market, at least 11 over the course of year. Training is key to develop and maintain skills needed to work in the food sector. Marjon University, Vives and Herwin join forces to create a training guid and toolbox for mentors in the field. The training will be co-created with mentors working in the sector positively impacting a lot of people far from the labour market. These pilots are great but to be durable in the long run a suitable socio-economic business model needs to be created, taking into acount social return on investment. A business model works best in a policy environment favorable to prevent food waste and to create jobs for vulnerable people. A policy task force is set out to start creating that positive climate. The preparatory work already started, presentations were given by PPs in different webinars to an audience of policy makers and stakeholders in the food surplus sector.



    Panier de la Mer

    Milieu & Werk vzw

    Stad Brugge

    Stad Mechelen

    VIVES Hogeschool

    Brighton & Hove Food Partnership

    Marjon Business School Plymouth University

    FEEDBACK Global

    FareShare Sussex


    URL / Download

    Pilots on how local networking around food surplus centres, incl. country side, cities and harbours can foster the creation of a food surplus sector

    Theme: Food waste - Social economy or entrepreneurship
    Type: Network
    Target: Local, regional and national authorities - Social enterprises and non-for-profit organisations - SMEs /enterprises

    Pilot on how alignment and logistical cooperation between FDC over a wider region can increase the amount collected and reduce the logistical costs

    Theme: Food waste - Social economy or entrepreneurship
    Type: Network
    Target: Social enterprises and non-for-profit organisations - Citizens - SMEs /enterprises