Biffa opens surplus food store in Southampton

Biffa opened a Company Shop store, which redistributes surplus stock from within the supply chain, in Southampton this week (18 August).

The store was opened by the mayor of Southampton, Cllr Alex Houghton

The waste management giant acquired the Company Shop group in February 2021 for an upfront cost of £82.5 million (see letsrecycle.com story).

Biffa said at the time the move marked a “significant strategic step” in its commitment to the circular economy.

The latest store in Bitterne, Southampton, is the second to open since the acquisition was completed. There are now 14 shops across the UK.

The members-only shop sells surplus food and household products from big-name brands such as Marks and Spencer, Nestlé and Tesco, which are typically around 50% off the normal retail price.

Membership is open to numerous key worker categories, including those in the NHS, care services, emergency services, FMCG supply chain, British Armed Forces, prison services, and those in receipt of means tested benefits, as well as being open to those employed by charities.

Opening

The opening was attended by the mayor of Southampton, Cllr Alex Houghton, who cut the ribbon to announce the store officially open for business.

Cllr Houghton said: “It was a pleasure to officially open Company Shop Southampton this morning, and to meet the brilliant team behind it.

“I am confident that the store will support a huge array of families in the area by providing high-quality, low-cost items, as well as creating 40 job roles, and I look forward to seeing the positive impact it will have on the community.”

Jobs

Biffa said the store had created 40 new jobs, and thousands of local people had already registered.

The store sells surplus food from across the supply chain

The store aims to prevent food and household products from going to waste by redistributing surplus stock – so food and products which may have otherwise gone to waste – from within the supply chain.

Biffa says the unique model “helps to tackle the challenge of food and product waste, whilst supporting families and bolstering the local economy”.

Speaking about the opening, Steph McGinty, Company Shop Group managing director, said: “We are so excited to have opened the doors of Company Shop Southampton, and we are really pleased to be able to bring our offer to the region of high-quality, low-cost products that also help to prevent waste.

“This wouldn’t have been possible without the support we’ve received along the way, for which we are very grateful. This has included industry partners, members, local organisations and Southampton City Council. It’s been great to have been joined today the Mayor to mark this momentous occasion.

“We look forward to continuing to work closely with everyone and the wider community to help stretch local family budgets. We’d encourage anyone who is eligible for membership to sign up now to access our offers as quickly as possible.”

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