Charity organisation UAE Food Bank has distributed 27,362 tonnes of food to various beneficiaries since it was established in 2017 until the end of 2020.
The initiative was launched to distribute surplus food to those in need. It has signed 112 agreements with partners in the country and other food banks and establishments in the region to facilitate the safe distribution of surplus food.
Out of the total food distributed to beneficiaries, 9,086 tonnes were distributed in 2020 alone. The UAE Food Bank currently has three branches in Dubai and one branch each in Ajman, Umm Al Quwain and Ras Al Khaimah.
A total of 144 fridges have been allocated for the collection of surplus food distributed across different regions in the UAE, including 84 in Dubai.
Food is distributed in cooperation with UAE-based charitable institutions as well as directly to labour accommodations.
The bank has established partnerships with restaurants, hotels, supermarkets, food factories, farms, caterers and suppliers to collect surplus food.
Dawoud Al Hajri, Vice-Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the UAE Food Bank and Director-General of Dubai Municipality, said: "We are working to implement the directives of Sheikha Hind bint Maktoum bin Juma Al Maktoum, wife of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of the UAE Food Bank, to reduce food wastage by distributing excess food to beneficiaries through our various channels in cooperation with charitable institutions.”
Al Hajri explained that the surplus food is transported in sterilised vehicles. Most of the food shipments are donated directly to the UAE Food Bank branches.
The bank’s activity can extend beyond the UAE, Al Hajri said, noting that food parcels were recently sent to other countries including Lebanon and Sudan.