The Waitrose Foundation and the Fairtrade Foundation are both supporting ‘The Great Fruit Adventure’, which is a trip across Europe and Africa to raise awareness in the UK.
Fresh produce industry veteran Max MacGillivray and his companion Gareth Jones will motorbike their way from the formal start from New Spitalfields Market in London, to Cape Town, South Africa.
On the way they will visit a range of fruit and veg growers including several supported by the two Foundations.
They will visit citrus growers in Spain, the largest grower of sweetcorn in Senegal, a fruit grower in Ghana that supplies Waitrose and Sainsbury with prepared fruit products, flowers growers in Ethiopia and Mozambique, exotic vegetable and coffee growers in Kenya and Tanzania.
“Fresh produce is my lifelong passion and I’ve put my heart and soul into the industry so I was dismayed to read that six out of 10 British children had no idea where the fruit and veg they eat comes from. Something had to be done,” said MacGillivray.
“I want to tell the story of the fantastic places where our fruit and veg is grown and having two big industry names backing us all the way is incredible.
“I can’t wait for the journey now especially after the encouragement and backing from the Waitrose Foundation and the Fairtrade Foundation.”
Unfair trading practices
Joanna Milis, education campaigns manager at the Fairtrade Foundation, which works to benefit small-scale farmers and workers across 74 developing countries, said: “Farmers around the world face many problems from unfair trading practices and poverty to climate change.
“The challenge Max is setting out on should help raise much-needed awareness about some of the issues.”
The Waitrose Foundation is a partnership between Waitrose, its suppliers and growers who produce, pick and pack its fresh produce in Ghana, Kenya and South Africa.
Amali Bunter, responsible sourcing manager at the Waitrose Foundation, said: “By being involved in The Great Fruit Adventure we hope that children will gain a fascinating insight into where their food comes from and how the Waitrose Foundation is impacting positively on communities across Africa.”