SecondBite Melbourne - HQ
Formally established in 2005, SecondBite was the idea of Ian and Simone Carson who decided they could no longer watch good food go to waste while people went hungry.
In its first year, SecondBite was run by just three volunteers in Victoria and moved just over 600 kg of food. Since then, the Melbourne hub has grown at an astounding rate with the generous support of volunteers, donors, and supporters alike. Now the national headquarters for the organisation, the Kensington warehouse operates with five vans, one truck, 23 staff and over 600 volunteers, with hubs in Geelong, Werribee, Sunshine and Kilsyth.
The SecondBite Geelong hub was established in 2009 and has since rescued and redistributed over 300,000 kg of fresh surplus food to 37 agencies in the Geelong region. Partnered with Community Veracity and managed by Geelong Operations Coordinator Ben Hill, the hub operates with two vans, two staff and a group of volunteers.
At the start of 2013, the Kilsyth hub opened in partnership with A Gesture. In the 2013 financial year, a total of 306,000 kg collected allowed us to service food agencies in the outer eastern suburbs, extending as far as the Yarra Valley region. The Kilsyth hub is located at Factory 7/155 Canterbury Rd, Kilsyth, where we are hosted by The Eastern Food Alliance and RTO.
SecondBite Community Connect™ works across regional Australia to the outer most areas of Victoria. Currently SecondBite Community Connect™ connects 50 regional and rural Victorian agencies to over 68 donors, moving an average of 19,000 kg of fresh surplus food per month.
In SecondBite's first year of operations in NSW, the priority was establishing a strong foundation for future growth. The SecondBite van in Sydney collected over 100,000 kg of nutritious fresh food during the 2013 financial year. We formed relationships with some of Sydney's larger and more established programs, including Exodus Foundation and Matthew Talbot Hostel.
By the end of the period, nearly 60 food donors were participating in the Community Connect program in the ACT and across regional NSW. Over 260,000 kg of fresh food was collected through this model during the period.
In the 2013 financial year Queensland collected 254,166 kg of fresh food, following a successful start of the Queensland operation in January 2012. This allowed us to roll out our direct delivery model throughout the greater Brisbane region to 77 community food programs.
The SecondBite Community Connect program also continued to grow with new regions, including Cairns, Townsville, Rockhampton, Toowoomba, Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast and Ipswich. Community Connect collected and redistributed 243,271 kg of fresh food to 60 community food programs.
Look out for the SecondBite van, kindly donated by the Dyson Bequest, and with refrigeration, on-road costs and maintenance donated by the Norris Group, buzzing around the streets of Brisbane as we continue to expand our community support nationally.
During the 2013 financial year, SecondBite collected a total of 84,702 kg through an interim subcontractor partnership with FoodBank SA and our Community Connect model. The SecondBite Community Connect model saw six agencies collecting from 12 Coles stores in South Australia and contributing more than 40% of the total collected. Establishment of our full operation is planned for 2014, so in the interim a successful relationship was established with Foodbank SA to collect from a further 10 stores. This model saw a further 49,626 kg of food collected and redistributed through their network of 65 agencies.
During the 2013 financial year, 170 community food programs in Tasmania received 655,843 kg of redistributed fresh food. 56% of this food was from farm gate collections, with the remainder donated by supermarkets, distributors, retailers and other sources. SecondBite has been recognised by the state government as being a major contributor to the emergency food relief effort and it has helped to support us financially.
With 34% of Tasmanians on some form of government benefit and the highest state unemployment rate in Australia, the incidence of food insecurity in the community continues to grow. In Tasmania, we have established food hubs, supported breakfast programs, delivered food hampers and contributed to the establishment of community gardens.
Some recent highlights include:
Our partnerships with CostaLogistics, SRT, Hazell Brothers and primary producers like Premium Fresh. These partnerships have created a formidable logistics model to enable the efficient distribution of surplus fresh food throughout Tasmania.
Volunteer support has been provided by various Rotary Clubs, (founding partners in Tasmania), Lions Clubs and a regular band of volunteers from the community. Without the support of volunteers, SecondBite would not be able to provide the current quantities of food to over 78 programs across the entire state of Tasmania.
After working with the NT government on the introduction of the Good Samaritan Act in 2010, SecondBite has been supporting Baptcare and the local Foodbank NT, under the direction of Peter Fisher. Foodbank NT is now part of the Coles Community Food with SecondBite program (Peter and Foodbank NT were one of the pilot agencies on the program that provided invaluable advice and data).
With the SecondBite Community Connect™ model, we will be looking to provide outer urban, regional and remote communities access to fresh surplus food.
This is an exciting year for SecondBite nationally, and with a dedicated team of volunteers, staff and supporters, we look forward to working with local food donors and recipient agencies on improving fresh food access across Australia.
The total collections in Western Australia for the 2013 financial year were 380,000 kg from all collection modes. Under the Coles Community Food with SecondBite partnership, fresh food is being collected from 23 Coles stores in Perth metro via a subcontract agreement with Uniting Care West and Food Rescue WA. Under SecondBite's Community Connect model, food is also being collected from a further 35 Coles stores in metro Perth and from a further 22 stores in regional WA, giving a coverage of over 90% of all Coles stores in WA.