The Belgian Foodbank Federation has noticed an “explosion” in the number of people that need their help recently.
More than 150,000 people used Foodbanks for the first time last year. “That’s a 10% increase”, says Jozef Mottar, the organisation’s administrator. “Unfortunately, we’ve seen the number continue to go up this year”. There was a workshop in Granmont to help those worse off get the most out of what they were given.
Food banks received 16,448 tonnes of food in 2017, for 157,151 people. They are asking for more storage space, freezers and equipment with wheels to meet the ever-increasing demand.
The Federation is now handing out advice to the people they help so everything is used efficiently. The packages they send out today contain a lot more than basic ingredients such as butter, flour, sugar and milk.
Foodbanks often hand out Chick peas, for example, but not everyone knows how to cook them. A chef held a workshop in Granmont on Friday to teach people to cook economically, how to use ingredients they don’t know and how to use left-overs.
Broccoli stalks are very tasty and carrot leaves can be used in soups, for example. Vegetable peelings, such as courgette peelings, are very nutritious. It is also advised not to put refrigerators in full sun as then they use more energy.