Get down to 34 Boar Lane during Leeds Indie Food and make the most of this pay-as-you-feel supermarket…
The Real Junk Food Emporium is now open. It’s a new pop-up supermarket that stocks perfectly good food otherwise destined for the bin. It’s run with an honesty policy, so you can do your weekly shop and pay-as-you-feel. But you’ll have to be quick, because it’s only here until Wednesday 30th May 2018.
It’s a collaboration between three Leeds foodies. Helen Russell Brown, Andy Castle of Ox Club and Caleb Elliott of The Real Junk Food Project all hate waste, so they put their heads together and came up with a way to show people that best before dates aren’t set in stone.
“Driven by our joint vision to make the waste food epidemic a mainstream mission, and a passion for the creativity and innovation of waste food cooking, we dreamt up a series of fine dining events to coincide with Leeds Indie Food Festival,” Helen told us. “Conversations with East Street Arts then opened up a space that allowed us to do so much more, and the PAYF supermarket was excitedly born.”
Thanks to East Street Arts and LJ Real Estate, they’ve taken over the former Arkwright’s Tool Emporium unit on Boar Lane and turned it into a pay-as-you-feel supermarket. There’s no telling what they’ll have on the shelves, it will change every day, depending on what local restaurants and supermarkets donate, but you can expect everything from cupboard ingredients to fresh fruit, vegetables and bread.
It’s not just a supermarket though, because Andy Castle is going to step away from Ox Club and into The Real Junk Food Emporium for a trio of special one-off fine dining events. He’ll see what’s left on the shelves and cook up an innovative 5-course dinner using nothing but discarded ingredients. These are ticketed events, but there’s still space if you want to see what genius he can cook up.
“We firmly believe that to end the waste food epidemic we must all join the fight,” Helen told us, “Young, old, rich, poor – with over 36 millions tonnes of food being wasted every day in the UK, there is enough to go around! We want to make it easy to make waste food solutions a part of everyday life for all members of our society – not just those in need but every person who appreciates food! We want to encourage everyone to become a part of the solution.”
If you want to help, you can volunteer a few hours of your time to help run the supermarket with Helen, Andy and Caleb, but no worries if not – just pop in next time you’re in Leeds city centre, because you might be surprised at what you’ll find.
The Real Junk Food Emporium Pay-As-You-Feel Supermarket, 34 Boar Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 5DA. It’s open from 3pm to 6pm everyday until Wednesday 30th May 2018, although those times might change if they sell out. Real Junk Food Emporium: Fine Dining will take place on Tuesday 15th, Tuesday 22nd and Monday 28th May 2018.