Vulnerable people throughout Edinburgh have been given a fresh start  this year thanks to a collaboration between a Leith-based workplace fruit delivery company and a local charity.

“Fruits in the City have been providing our crisis service on Holyrood Road with leftover fruit on a weekly basis,” said Jackie Brown, Fundraising and Relationship Manager, from the charity Streetwork UK.

The Edinburgh-based charity offers immediate crisis support for homeless people while encouraging them to make use of a range of support services with the ultimate goal of achieving life off the streets. Jackie continued:- “Jamie Henderson of Fruits in the City approached us to offer his company’s support – a clear demonstration of his generosity, his forward thinking and his interest in the wider scope of activities taking place in Edinburgh. He is also one of the cheeriest people I’ve ever worked with which is a real plus!”

Fruits in the City supply a tempting selection of fresh and healthy fruit boxes and baskets to Edinburgh and Glasgow’s office workforce. The company has exacting standards when it comes to the quality, size and appearance of the fruit that is delivered to customers. It also has a commitment to continuously improving its environmental credentials. By donating fruit to charity, Fruits in the City achieve two objectives; the company helps to directly benefit the local people who use the Streetwork facility and also minimises the wastage of fruit that – save the odd blemish or being a little smaller than average – is otherwise perfect.

Jamie Henderson, founder of Fruits in the City, explains, “The fruit that we donate is perfectly edible, it just hasn’t met our company’s strict quality control standards. Our donations could include undersized bananas, for example, or fruit that may ripen too quickly.” And Streetwork’s Jackie Brown is quick to agree, “The fruit that we receive is fantastic quality and provides a healthy and nutritious addition to our service users’ diets.”

Streetwork is not the only local charity to benefit from such donations. Jamie has come up with a novel solution to ensure that as little as possible goes to landfill each week. And the animals and exotic birds at Edinburgh Zoo are certainly not complaining!

“It’s vitally important that zoo animals receive a species-appropriate diet,” says Darren McGarry, Animal Collection Manager at Edinburgh Zoo. “Fresh fruit forms an important part of the diet – both in terms of taste and nutritionally – for lots of different creatures from Bali starlings to Buff-cheeked gibbons. And the regular donations that we receive from Fruits in the City provide a welcome addition to our food stores and help supplement the animals’ regular diet of vegetables and seeds.”