The first “food bank” calling itself the “green oasis of food” recently opened a store on China’s e-commerce platform Taobao.
The store is an electronic store, which provides foods close to the expiry date for free to those in need, which are donated by various commercial institutions.
Those in need can order food from the store and have it delivered to their homes through the express delivery service.
The Green Oasis Food Bank, located on Ichan Street in Shanghai’s Pudong New District, sees crowded queues every morning to get food.
The bank has authorized 304 non-profit organizations, neighborhoods, and schools as distribution points for free meals. More than 50,000 volunteers are involved in sorting and distributing food.
Since its establishment at the end of 2014, the Green Oasis Food Bank has helped 239 food factories, rescued more than 1,000 tons of expired food that was about to be wasted, and distributed it to more than one million people in need for free, according to the newspaper. Chinese “people”.
All the world’s food banks rely on the traditional offline store model, but with higher labor costs, lower distribution efficiency, and beneficiaries being confined to a small group. The online food bank was opened this time to increase the speed and efficiency of food distribution and cover more people in need. The online delivery process also preserves the dignity of food recipients.
In line with the legal regulations introduced by China to combat food waste, foods that are nearing the expiry date are becoming more and more popular.
In this regard, Professor Liu Shaoye, deputy director of the Food and Drug Administration Research Center at East China University of Science and Technology, said that this type of food can be eaten with confidence before the expiration date.
In the same context, Li Bing, an official with the “Green Oasis for Food”, indicated that the bank had not received any complaints about food safety, thanks to the adoption of the food tracking system that was established over many years.
Zhang Yongjian, director of the Research Center for the Development of the Food and Drug Industry of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, believes that consumers’ behavior regarding foods close to expiring is becoming more rational, which provides a good external environment for charitable and optimum use of this type of food.