Food safety

Food safety is extremely important to take into account when sharing surplus food. Both the person giving, food and the person collecting the food, should always take the following into account:

🏠  Food shared from a domestic kitchen

Our #1 guideline is ¨Is it good enough for you?¨ Only add food that you would be willing to eat yourself. Any person giving away food must not give anything away if they believe it is unsafe to eat. Some things to take into consideration are:

  • Make sure you have been storing the food off the floor, away from pets, children and goblins.
  • If you are not meeting in person, do not leave the food outside on the ground. Instead, please keep it in a sealed plastic box or a cool box to ensure that the food remains uncontaminated.

When requesting food, you are responsible for asking questions that make you comfortable that the food is safe to eat. Some things to take into consideration are:

    • If it's homemade, what are the ingredients?
    • If it's opened, when was it opened and how has it been stored?
    • If allergens are a concern, which allergens are present in the food?
    • Do not collect and eat food if you are worried that it’s unsafe to eat
  • Please read Section B (relevant to people requesting) and Section C (relevant to people giving) in our T&Cs thoroughly if you have any further concerns.

🏪  Food donated by businesses

Olio volunteers (Food Waste Heroes) collect surplus food such as freshly prepared salads, sandwiches, pastries and packaged products from local businesses and caterers.

  • Food Waste Hero volunteers are trained in food safety. We’ve developed a robust and easy-to-apply Food Safety Management System (FSMS) that all FWHs adhere to. It’s easy to use, yet sophisticated enough, to ensure all types of food are distributed in a safe way. Our FSMS, created with input from the Food Standards Agency, is approved by our Primary Authority and based on a Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points (HACCP) study.
  • Click here for an overview of how Food Safety is ensured by volunteers on Olio. And here to check all the Food Safety rules the volunteers must follow.
  • Packaged food donated from businesses should be fully labelled.
  • Some food will not be fully labelled but will still have the name on the packaging. Requesters can cross reference the food with allergen information here (also linked out from the bottom of volunteer listings)

If you have any concerns about the safety of food supplied by anyone using Olio, please report the item using the flag in the top right of the app or by clicking report within the messages section of the app

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