Aldi is giving away leftovers to anyone in need on Christmas Eve

Offers charities and food banks surplus food

Updated: 

An Aldi supermarket

Aldi has pledged to offer surplus produce to food banks and charities as it closes its stores on Christmas Eve.

The budget supermarket says that on December 24, any leftovers will be free to good causes and those in need from 4pm, when it shuts up shop.

Aldi UK circulated a statement on social media urging charities and organisations to contact its head office to arrange collections from any one of its circa 520 local branches.

Aldi's notice says: "As our stores will shut at 4pm on Christmas Eve until the 27th of December, we will have a variety of good quality surplus food products that we wish to redistribute in support of less fortunate individuals and to prevent food going to waste.

Credits: Aldi

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"We are unfortunately unable to deliver products on locally, so it would be essential that your organisation is able to collect. We will expect the levels of food available to vary, however estimations of around 20-30 crates will be expected from each store.

"If you wish to collect all products available, we would therefore recommend providing a large car or van, or being prepared to make multiple journeys.

"However you are more than welcome to take as much of the products offered as you can use - you are not required to take all products. We would also ask to ensure that you bring appropriate collection containers (bags, crates, boxes, etc.) as we will only have a limited number of cardboard boxes potentially available for use."

We were a bit worried that the notice was a horrible hoax, and Aldi isn't picking up the phone. But, helpfully:

Aldi says it will have fresh fruit and vegetables, meat, fish, bread and bakery products, as well as chilled goods, dairy items, desserts and ready meals free for anyone in need. All products will be in date by at least one day.

You might even fancy one of the supermarket's new salted caramel gammon joints? Erm.

People have been praising Aldi for what is undoubtedly a very good thing. To begin with, due to the notice coming from various sources, people questioned its validity. Aldi this morning confirmed that the offer is legitimate.

See also: Shelves cleared in minutes when supermarket gives away all its food

See also: Half of children getting foodbank supplies aged five-11, says Trust

Emma Mistletofi said: "Aldi have confirmed this is true, which is wonderful. Now, how many other big supermarkets will do the same and if not, why not?"

Indeed, given how good an idea it is, many are calling on Britain's other supermarkets to do the same. We've asked Tesco, Sainsbury's, Asda, Lidl, Morrisons, and Waitrose.

Aldi is asking organisations to collect from stores on Christmas Eve between 4:30pm and 5:30pm. Those who would like to collect food should contact Nicki Monaghan at Aldi Stores Ltd, Holly Lane, Atherstone, CV9 2SQ or ring 01827 711800 (we've discovered that the number is quite busy, but do keep trying).

If you're not involved with a food bank, individuals might instead try doing a reverse food bank , which is a great way of donating food to those in need over the festive period.

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