The Food Pantry is a weekly food club. Members pay £5 each time they shop and can choose around £20 worth of food and other essentials.
All of this in a friendly and supportive environment where members are encouraged to stay and chat over a hot drink.
Prioritising choice, value, dignity and accessibility, our pantries are suitable for families and individuals. There is also access to advice and follow on support.
Access to our pantries is by referral only as we will want to arrange an induction for you on your first visit.
You can refer yourself or someone else by contacting us in one of these ways:
OUR FOOD PANTRY LOCATIONS
For days, times and locations our Food Pantry sessions, see below.
Old Community Centre
Liverpool Road Methodist
Bishop David Sheppard School
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Anyone who for any reason is experiencing financial hardship which is likely to go on for a while.
Unfortunately the Pantries are only accessible on payment of the membership subscription.
Food Pantry is similar to a foodbank in that it is set up to help people who are struggling – but there are some differences. The Pantry has a membership scheme so you can visit each week rather than as a one off. At Pantry you can chose what food items you take home with you, and there is fresh and frozen food too.
Members cannot belong to both the Southport Trussell Trust Food Bank and the Pantry.
A lot of your kitchen cupboard favourites like cereal, tinned goods, pasta and biscuits; as well as fresh items like milk and cheese and some frozen foods. Also available are household products and toiletries. We often have things like bread and fresh veg, which are offered as extras.
A great deal of effort goes in to ensuring both the quality and the safety of the food we give out at our Pantries. We are very proud to hold a 5 star rating from Environmental Health at all of our sites.
The Pantry does not stock food that is past it’s ‘use by date’ as this could be harmful to health and it is against the law. However, we do sometimes stock items that are slightly past their ‘best before’ date. The British Food Standards Agency says, “‘Best before’ dates are about quality, not safety. Manufacturers put a best ‘before date’ on food packaging to indicate how long the food will be at its best quality. When the date is passed, it doesn’t mean that the food will be harmful, but it may begin to lose its taste, aroma or texture but still remains edible and safe”. With regards to eggs, the advice is that providing they are cooked thoroughly (until both yolk and white are solid), or are used in dishes where they will be fully cooked such as a cake, they can be eaten a day or two after their ‘best before’ date. Every year, in households across the UK, we throw away 7.2 million tonnes of food and drink, most of which could be consumed. At the Pantry we encourage members to think carefully before throwing away food past its ‘best before’ date.
Items are purchased using membership subscriptions from national distribution charities such as ‘Fareshare’. This is usually food which is in date and good to eat but has become surplus, for simple reasons such as over-production, labelling errors or short shelf-life.
There are regular collections of short, end of life and damaged produce from food retail outlets across Southport. These are delivered to the Pantry on a weekly basis. Donated items are also collected regularly through community outlets and churches. Many items on offer at the Pantry are received through the generous food donations from members of the public.
During certain times of the year, some of the fresh food on offer may have also been received through local food growing projects.
The money received from membership subscription is used to purchase stock, buy equipment and pay for running costs.
We are happy to receive cash, cheques or donations of unwanted in-date groceries and locally grown food such as seasonal fruit and vegetables, which will be distributed to members along with other goods available.
Membership is for a defined period of time, depending on your individual circumstances. A typical membership would be one year.
There are a number of different ways to contact Southport Food Pantry and to keep up to date with the latest information. You can use our contact form, email email@example.com or call our office on 01704 264505.