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System for Food Surplus Donations by Ajde Makedonija

Macedonia is a country going through tremendous change at the current time and prioritising the needs of its most vulnerable citizens must be emphasized. As an Environmental NGO, Ajde Makedonija is working to see Macedonia without waste.

Through our work, we realised that a tremendous resource, food, was being wasted throughout the country with tens of thousands of tons of perfectly edible food being wasted due to low consumer awareness, misaligned supply and demand and other factors. Unfortunately, food insecurity - the state of not having reliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food - is rampant throughout Macedonia, impacting close to 450.000 Macedonians. We have spent the last 18 months working on efforts to prevent food waste and mitigate food insecurity including the establishment of the first ever System for Food Surplus Donations.

Through our efforts, we identified that we needed to establish an indirect system where food surplus donations are shared with intermediaries (i.e. formal or informal groups) to distribute to beneficiaries. We realised that we needed to be able to manage the various origins of the food whether it be from a pastry shop or from distributors offering different types of food (prepared vs. packaged) and quantities. In addition, the different origins of the food requires different capacities and capabilities for the CSOs who are responsible for picking up the food, whether it be transport options through companies or volunteers, storage facilities for longer shelf life items or kitchens to prepare the food surplus to share with their beneficiaries. Lastly, one of the biggest issues has been the tremendous financial and administrative burden created by the current law for donations that requires much back and forth between businesses and CSOs for tax relief, which leads businesses to wasting the food, in order to save time and money. We have been working diligently to introduce legislative changes to enable large scale food surplus donations which will hopefully address the administrative burden while creating more incentives for businesses to provide more food surplus donations in the future. As the legislative process moved, we knew we needed to establish a system to build the capacities and capabilities within the civil sector to manage and handle the anticipated food surplus donations that are available today, and will be in the future.

Until now, we have provided food to over 2,000 citizens, diverted over 700 kilos of food from going to waste, and eliminated over 8,000 kgs of CO2 Emissions. We have been fortunate to have identified organisations (businesses and CSOs) who are interested in making a difference in their communities by providing food surplus. We will feature these organisations on 23 April 2018 at our launch event, and we will continue to add new organisations and businesses over the coming months. We call all businesses to join the big change to end hunger in Macedonia. To learn more about the work of Ajde Makedonija, visit

Ajde Makeonija - Let's do it Macedonia