24 July 2018
Welcome to Jo Dyson, FareShare's new Head of Food.
“There’s no such things as a typical day at FareShare, which is what I love about it.”
We caught up with Jo on a recent visit to FareShare London's warehouse.
I’m Head of Food – so I oversee the team getting food into the network. We build relationships with the food industry including major retailers and producers, as well as wholesalers and food service suppliers to the catering industry.
We also work closely with the Network Development team and our regional centres to understand better what they want, as this can vary depending on the types of charities they support.
I’d been working in buying, supply chain and logistics for many years both directly for food retailers and as a consultant and before that as an advisor to the Department of Health on their work with the food industry including the “5 a Day” campaign.
I’m also Chair of a small charity which works to give families a healthy start in life. When I saw the FareShare job I thought it was a great combination of what I’d been doing workwise and my charity sector experience. I also hate food waste and the opportunity to put surplus food to such good use was irresistible.
The people, they are a super lot – talented, great skills and lovely to be around. I’m also amazed and uplifted by the commitment and passion of the people running the charities that we support. The redistributed food means so much to them and it makes it all the more worthwhile to see the impact of FareShare food.
There’s no such thing as a typical day at FareShare, which is what I love about it. I might talk through food offers with the Food team, balancing these against the needs of the network. Then it might be a meeting with a retailer or producer to help them reduce their waste; and then perhaps a project meeting, working with people from other teams. I also enjoy getting out and about into the network visiting the regional centres when I can, so it’s a great chance to see how they are getting on with recent food deliveries into their warehouses, especially at the moment when there are so many exciting expansion plans.
On my second day I was at the West Midlands regional centre in Birmingham. Mandy [West Midlands manager], Jo and the team there were showing me the sheer quality of the product coming in to the warehouse. That – and meeting the amazing volunteers and charities – well, it made a huge impact on me.
I love Middle Eastern salads – so anything with bulgar wheat and roasted vegetables, and I’m happy – plus it’s a great way of using up leftover veg!