I wrote a few weeks ago about how I trying to be a little bit more environmentally conscious and making small changes to reduce my carbon footprint. So when my friend Lee recommended food waste app Too Good to Go to me, it was definitely something I wanted to try.
Too Good To Go is a free app which allows you to buy unsold food from from local restaurants at the end of service, to prevent it from being thrown away. It means you get good, perfectly edible food at a great price and do some good for the planet. It relatively simple to use. You set your location and it tells you what’s available in the area. Where we live, there isn’t a massive choice, but some big chains like Morrisons and Costa and pretty much always on.
Everything is packed as a ‘mystery box’ and you on average get about £10 worth of food for around the £3 mark. The mystery being of course most places don’t know what they’re going to have left at the end of the day, so you’re taking your chances. In terms of Costa it’s usually their pre-packed sandwiches and bottled drinks, which bearing in mind usually sell for at least £3 each, getting a couple of packets of sarnies and drinks for less than a fiver is pretty decent value.
For the purposes of our first go, we decided to try a local pub which is a carvery, and reserved two ‘mystery boxes’ from there, to collect (collection times are pre determined by the retailer) between 7.30 and 8pm one Sunday evening, in the hope that we would get two decent Sunday roasts for less than £7, to collect and eat in the safety and comfort of our own home.
And wow two decent Sunday roasts we definitely got! The box was jam packed with four types of veg, pigs in blankets, yorkshires and a little side pot of gravy. The only thing slightly lacking was the meat (turkey in this case) but i’m guessing its because that’s what they have the most limited amount of. It was still delish though, piping hot and for £3.50, and absolute steal.
We’ve also since taken advantage of the Costa offer a couple of times too. The first time was slim pickens and only got a packet of short bread biscuits and some cinnamon buns (the girl did feel bad and gave me a free coffee though which was nice) but the times after that we’ve had a ciabatta toasties and chocolate muffins each, which again, for the price is great value and literally something that’s going to be chucked in the bin anyway. It’s the epitome of win/win.
Got to give a quick shout out to the local independents who sign up to the app, a few of which located in areas near me like Jesmond and Gosforth Its nice to know they can recoup a little back on stuff they would ordinarily chuck out, and if you’re supporting a small business at the same time, the more the better.
It really does depend on where you live or how willing you are to travel to get the good deals, as we’re pretty limited where we live, and I imagine there will be locations that don’t return any results at all. If you live near a city centre or large retail park though I reckon you’d be able to get some really good savings I really jealous of anyone who lives within collection distance of a Yo! Sushi because some of the hauls I’ve seen people get from there online has been insaaaane! And please can Greggs add themselves to this app so we can have Greggs for lunch every day?!
Thank you for the review, Helen. It’s good to know that there are win win situations for the retailers, customers, but also, most importantly, for the planet. It means less perfectly edible food is put into the ground. I am aware that our local supermarket bins several bin bags of food a day. That’s just one shop. I wonder how much ALL the shops and cafes waste? I will tell them about this scheme in the hope that It will lead to less waste.