Food Recovery Project

Every year millions of tons of perfectly edible food ends up in landfills. On Quadra, we are working with local stores and food producers to reduce food waste and help people stretch their grocery budget a little further.

On Mondays and Thursdays, volunteers collect food which has reached its “sell by” date from the two Tru Value stores and Amped on Nutrition. This food is generally frozen when it is removed from the shelves until it can be collected and brought to our sorting location in Heriot Bay. In the summer, this food is supplemented by contributions from gardeners with excess produce, and seasonal tourism businesses. Volunteers check the food for signs of spoilage and sort what is suitable for human consumption, with the remainder being collected for distribution to local pig and chicken farmers. Packaging is removed where possible and recycled, and anything else is composted by local gardeners. Everything is stored at proper temperatures in our fridges and freezers until distribution.

All are welcome to “shop” from what is available, and no identification on income information is required. If you can use the food, you are welcome to it. We may limit what each person can take just so no one goes away empty-handed. The only information gathered is about the number of people each person is feeding.

Community groups can also collect food from the program and have priority in selecting what they can use. Groups like Quadra Circle, the Quadra Community Lunch and Read Island Aging in Place feed dozens of elders and community members with recovered food that would otherwise have ended up in the landfill producing methane emissions.

In addition to the twice-weekly distributions, a community fridge is stocked three times a week. The fridge is located behind the Quadra Medical Clinic in Quathiaski Cove and is accessible to all 24/7. Two additional locations for fridges are currently being sought to allow more people to access recovered food.

In 2023 the Food Recovery program collected 4,296 kgs of food and fed, at a very conservative estimate, 3,494 people.

There is no charge for recovered food, but donations to help defray the cost of volunteers’ gas, electricity for the fridges and freezers, and other administrative expenses are gratefully accepted. Donations over $10 may receive a tax receipt upon request.

Distribution of Food

Twice a week, with hours varying slightly by season.  Summer Hours (starting May 20th):

  • Monday 1:00–2:00pm in the parking lot of the Legion in Heriot Bay
  • Thursday 4:30-5:30pm in the parking lot behind the Library in Quathiaski Cove

Food usually comprises frozen beef, chicken, pork, and baked goods, as well as some fresh dairy and eggs.

Volunteer

If you would like to volunteer to pick up from stores, weigh and sort donations, or manage distributions or the stocking and monitoring of the community fridge(s), please contact Ramona Boyle at 250 285 3440 or email ramonaboyle@gmail.com.