As Durham's branch of The Real Junk Food Project, REfUSE divert food destined for waste and use it instead to build community.

REfUSE image of food If Trust

Around 40% of the food produced globally is either left rotting in fields, lost along the food supply chain or dumped into landfill. We intercept tonnes and tonnes of perfectly good food that has wrongly been labelled 'worthless' due to scandalous systematic problems: overproduction, strict cosmetic standards, damaged packaging, incorrect labelling, seasonal packaging, best-before dates, cancelled orders etc.

REfUSE run a creative and inclusive 'Pay As You Feel' community cafe in Chester-le-Street, as well as pop-up restaurant events, campaigns, a schools project and a grocery box scheme in County Durham. We are raising awareness and education about the environmental impact of food waste, building community and providing healthy food and good company to anyone that wants it.

We operate on a 'Pay As You Feel' basis: guests can pay for their meals in cash, but non-monetary donations of time or skills are just as valuable. We believe PAYF encourages us to think about the true value of food: the resources, time and energy that have gone into producing it; but also includes and empowers those who may struggle to afford food.

Diane from IF says...

We really like the holistic nature of REfUSE's model. Every day their brilliant team think of creative ways to use the food that they have collected to provide delicious dishes. In doing so they are modelling how we can all appreciate and use food differently from the high-waste culture that has grown up. And by building a community around shared meals they are giving even more value to the food that was destined for waste. It's a win-win!