Charities and community groups based in the St Neots area are being urged to apply for free food donations as part of a new scheme launched by Tesco.

The supermarket giant has joined forces with the FareShare charity to dish out unsold food to vulnerable people across the town.

As part of its ongoing pledge to cut food waste, Tesco's Community Food Connection programme along with FareShare FoodCloud recruits and supports charities and community groups, linking them to Tesco stores via an innovative app that allows store teams to alert them to surplus unsold food items available at the end of each day. The unsold food is free and includes fresh produce, such as fruit, vegetables and bakery products. Chilled products such as meat, dairy and ready meals are also offered.

About 1,000,000 meals have been donated to people in need via Community Food Connection, following a successful pilot in 14 stores last year and a national rollout from March this year, has seen more than 2,220 charities sign up to the scheme.

Rifka Chakkalakal, Tesco' community food programmes manager, said: "No food that can be eaten should go to waste. We're really excited to start working on this initiative to ensure that any unsold food we have is made use of. We are looking forward to forging strong links with local charities and community groups in St Neots and using this initiative to support their efforts to help vulnerable people in our community."

INFO: Charities and community groups who use food to support people, should register their interest by visiting www.fareshare.org.uk/fareshare-foodcloud.