Company Shop, the UK’s biggest redistributor of surplus food, has been presented with a Queen’s Award for Enterprise at its headquarters in Tankersley, South Yorkshire. The award was presented by the Lord Lieutenant for the county, Andrew Coombe, on behalf of the Queen.
The awards are given for outstanding achievement by UK businesses, with Company Shop winning the sustainable development category, for commercially successful services that benefit the environment, society and the economy.
An award ceremony was held at the Tankersley warehouse and headquarters. The Citation was presented to Company Shop’s longest serving employee, Maureen McNulty, who has been with the company for 27 years. The Symbol was presented to Founder and Chairman, John Marren. The team and staff celebrated with members – inviting shoppers to the Tankersley store for free cakes and drinks.
Company Shop is the UK’s leading redistributor of surplus food, and was founded over 40 years ago in Barnsley by John Marren. The organisation takes food from retailers, manufacturers and brands, that is perfectly good to eat, but can’t be sold in supermarkets. This food may be incorrectly packaged, of incorrect weight, or may be surplus to needs. The surplus food is sold to Company Shop’s members – who work in the food production industry and the emergency services – at a fraction of the recommended retail price.
The business now handles more than 30,000 tonnes of surplus stock from the food supply chain each year and ensures that as much of this good food reaches feed people’s plates as possible, rather than going to landfill or anaerobic digestion.
The award also recognises Community Shop, the UK’s first network of social supermarkets, which was launched by Company Shop in Goldthorpe in South Yorkshire in 2013. The stores sell high-quality, low-cost surplus food to local members who are on some form of income support but who are motivated to make a positive change in their lives. They enrol on courses on employability, financial skills and self-confidence. A further store has since opened in London, and plans are underway for a network of stores across the country.
Company Shop’s Managing Director, Mark Game, said:
“We are thrilled that our unique approach to solving the problem of food waste in the UK has been recognised.
It’s recognition at the highest level of the social, environmental and economic impact the business has.”
Company Shop’s Founder and Chairman, John Marren, said:
“This fantastic award is the product of years of hard work by our staff, and the loyalty of our members.”
“Receiving a Queen’s Award is a huge honour, and I would like to thank all of our partners, members and staff, past and present, for getting us where we are today.”