Chocolates, cured meat and sauces left over after cruises halted are handed to food charity

From left, Pauline Robertson Leith port chaplain for the Sailors' Society, Teresa McGoldrick, region

From left, Pauline Robertson Leith port chaplain for the Sailors' Society, Teresa McGoldrick, regional food officer for Scotland at FareShare and Robert McDonald, executive chef of the Fred.Olsen Cruise Lines' ship Balmoral Picture: FRED.OLSEN CRUISE LINES - Credit: Archant

Ten of thousands of pounds worth of cruise line food which couldn’t be served up to passengers after the coronavirus crisis broke has been donated to charity.

Ipswich-based Fred.Olsen Cruise Lines has given away more than £33k worth of food from its ships – Balmoral, Braemar, Boudicca and Black Watch – which have now been laid up in Rosyth.

The donations – which equate to more than 30 pallets worth of food including cereals, biscuits, dried fruits, nuts and seeds, jams and sauces, chocolates, cured meats, baking ingredients and rice – have been given to food distribution charity FareShare.

MORE – Cruise ships head to port as industry becalmed amid coronavirus uncertainty

They will go to help people in need, including those suffering isolation, poverty or homelessness.

Fred.Olsen operations boss Thomas Rennesland said they were used to feeding more than 4,000 guests and crew across the fleet every day.

“While we have not taken on any additional fresh produce since we paused our operations in March – other than that required to feed our crew – our stores and freezers were fully stocked and ready for cruising as normal,” he said.

As the ships had been docked at the Babcock facilities in Rosyth since March it seemed “only fitting” to donate the food to those who need it most in Scotland, he said.

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“The crew on board have worked extremely hard, in addition to their usual duties, to prepare all of the food items so that they are ready for collection by FareShare and I would like to thank all involved for their efforts for this very worthy cause.”

Teresa McGoldrick, regional food officer Scotland for FareShare, said the team was “enormously grateful” for the dondation.

“This food will be hugely welcomed by the hundreds of community organisations we serve supporting the elderly and vulnerable at home during this very difficult time,” she said.

“The support from Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines is the equivalent of 30,000 meals to the most vulnerable people. That is the amazing difference this donation and others like it make to the lives of people in our communities. Heartfelt thank you from us all.”

Fred. Olsen said it was continuing to assess all upcoming cruises on a weekly basis, having paused them because of the crisis.

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