Co-op opts out of Christmas ad to focus on community-led food initiative
Instead of a traditional multi-million pound Christmas TV commercial, the Co-op will be raising awareness of community solutions to food projects tackling rising household costs.
As part of its long-term commitment to ensure communities, members and colleagues have better access to sustainable food solutions, Co-op has announced a major new partnership with Your Local Pantry – a membership-based food scheme and community hub.
Today, (16th Nov), Co-op has partnered with TV Chef and Rapper Big Zuu, to stream live from Your Local Pantry in Peckham. The unique activation will bring the local community together through food, by demonstrating simple and nutritious recipes for only a few pounds, as well as meeting the Local Pantry volunteers and members who are helping their community grow and thrive.
The live stream will also see special appearances from Chef, Presenter and Author, Miguel Barclay – the brains behind One Pound Meals, to share useful tips and tricks to make your groceries go further.
The partnership, which is funded by Co-op Members, will see the Your Local Pantry network triple within three years from 75 to 225 pantries across the UK, with the addition of 150 new pantries.
Pantries are run by uniformed staff and volunteers, are open to all and work like any other grocery store, in that you choose the food you want from the shelves. Members pay a small subscription of a few pounds a week, and in return can choose groceries worth many times more.
This Christmas, and all year round, those looking for financial support can become a Local Pantry Member and pay as little as 3.50 for around £10 worth of food. At the Peckham Pantry, it costs just 4.50 for around £15.0 of food.
To date, Your Local Pantry has helped tens of thousands of households improve finances and access more affordable food. Through the new partnership, Co-op and Your Local Pantry aim to support over 32,0000 households over the next three years, saving Local Pantry members almost £5million on shopping bills. Regular members save an average of £1,000 a year.
Shirine Khoury-Haq, Group CEO at Co-op, said: “Whilst many of our competitors are adapting their Christmas ads to reflect the mood of the nation in a cost-of-living crisis, we are going further by pulling our ad altogether. In doing so we will be shining a light on the need to support vital community causes, throughout the year and not just at Christmas, especially with a deep recession looming.”
“Our unique Co-op membership continues to drive our thinking and through our members incredible support, we are able to channel our resources and make local differences in ways no others can match. Through their ongoing commitment we can make society fairer and more co-operative.”
James Henderson, Your Local Pantry network development coordinator, added: “Pantries are fantastic places. They bring people together around food, soften the impact of high living costs, and strengthen the power and potential of neighbourhoods. Communities have long wanted to improve food security while upholding dignity, choice and hope, and Pantries are a proven win-win solution. We’re really excited to be teaming up with the Co-op, so another 150 neighbourhoods can open Pantries of their own.”
Big Zuu, TV chef and grime artist added: “Everyone deserves access to great quality food at affordable prices. I hope that by visiting the Peckham Pantry and cooking up some healthy, tasty and more affordable meals with the team, more people in need will seek out community initiatives like Your Local Pantry.
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