Luton foodbank shares desperate appeal as stocks reach ‘lowest ever levels’

They will be out of food by the end of the month, say volunteers
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A foodbank in Luton has shared a desperate appeal in a bid to replenish its stock, currently at the lowest levels since it opened over ten years ago.

In a video, Luton Foodbank volunteer, Paul Turvey, showed the inside of the stockroom – which is almost bare after experiencing higher demand than usual and fewer donations.

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Paul said: “Without the aid of the community and other people, we will be running out of food by the end of this month. We're doing between 400 to 500 parcels a week, That's roughly about 6,000 items that go out every single week. And roughly what comes in between one and a half to 2,000 items, so you can see that the comparison doesn't fit.”

Paul from Luton Foodbank and the dwindling stock. Picture: Luton Foodbank via XPaul from Luton Foodbank and the dwindling stock. Picture: Luton Foodbank via X
Paul from Luton Foodbank and the dwindling stock. Picture: Luton Foodbank via X

He turns to a single pallet of pasta sitting in the stockroom, which is only enough to last the foodbank a week, adding: “We have never ever got this low through the years that we’ve been here, that’s all they have. We have no tinned vegetables, hardly any baked beans, no meat.

"We are running low on biscuits, cereal. Basically everything that is non perishable, we will take.”

Salma Khan, director of operations at the foodbank, joined in with asking people for the much-needed donations – but has told people who are facing food insecurity to still contact the service.

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She said: “I think a difficult time of year especially as the holiday periods are coming, and Easter break for the families – that's when children eat more. We expect food prices to go increase even more on people can get in touch with us through our social media, website, email, or phone number.

"Luton in such a generous town and you know, that's why we put the appeal out because we know that they actually engage with us and will donate.”

While the foodbank would not want to turn anyone in need away from the service, but it could be forced to do so if their stock does not begin to fill up again.

Salma explained: “If we had food, we use all the food first. And then if you don't have any food, we'd have to go buy the food. And once you have no money left, then there's nothing else we can do. But we’ve never done that. We know that the community would never allow that.”

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Businesses and individuals can donate food items and money directly to Luton Foodbank, or can drop donations off to any of the points across the town: ASDA Wigmore, Chaul End Community Centre, Co-op (Birdsfoot Lane), Co-op (Biscot), Co-op (Hitchin Rd), Discover Islam, The Mall, Nationwide Building Society on George Street, Sainsbury’s (Dunstable Road), and Salto Gym.

Here is a list of the urgently needed items: Tinned rice pudding, tinned meat, instant noodles, tinned vegetables, tinned fruit, cartons of fruit juice, soup, dried rice (500g), long life milk, tinned tomatoes, baked beans, tinned fish, tinned pasta in sauce, sauce for pasta, breakfast cereal, tea bags, single packs of biscuits and sugar (500g).