Lewes Knowledge Cafe: making use of surplus food

A chance to learn how London is using surplus food and feeding those who are struggling; to discuss how the PlanZheroes project has worked in London and to see if the conditions are right for it to work in Lewes and beyond.


  1. The account of the inaugural Knowledge Cafe held at Le Magasin Lewes on Monday 24th September 2012.

    Background to the meeting:

    This came about following a chance meeting between a resident of Lewes (Paul J Corney) with Maria Ana Neves one of the co-founders and inspirations behind Plan Zheroes a citizen led movement to help use surplus food in London.
    After a 3 month awareness campaign (use of social media, direct and targeted mailings to schools, centres of worship, publicans, gp groups, charities, volunteer groups, restaurants and hotels), it was decided to hold an open evening (a Knowledge Cafe) to look at what Plan Zheroes had acheived to date in London; whether a need existed in and around Lewes and finally could a Plan Zheroes style operation work here.

    It is important to note the tacit and often explicit support of Lewes District Council Officials, Councillors and Transition Town Lewes (a number of whom were at the meeting).

    * Plan Zheroes (PZ) are the 'community noticeboard' of donors and recipients of surplus food. They are not for profit and a core priniciple is that they do not charge either for the acquisition or provision of surplus food.
    * In a way they are brokers providing a service that brings parties at all levels of the food supply chain into contact with each other through their interactive map.
    * There is a need in and around Lewes: an increasing number of people are struggling and this will be exacerbated by changes in benefits from April 2013. Yet surplus food exists and while great initiatives are already under way many people are unaware of what others are doing and can offer (where the Plan Zheroes map comes in).
    * A number of good ideas for sourcing and delivering surplus food emerged.  Most of the people who attended were excited by the prospect of using the Plan Zheroes map to help connect donors with recipients.

    Plan Zheroes:
    Maria Ana Neves
    Knowledge et al team:
    Paul J Corney (Catalyst); Ana Aguilar-Corney (Registration & Curator); Joe Offer (Curator)
    Le Magasin hosts:
    Frankie; Maddie; Joe; Cameron; Xavi
    Cross section of volunteer groups, street evangelists, gp surgeries, councillors, council officials, leaders of networks and business people. NB Names have been omitted to preserve anonymity.

  2. Introductions:

  3. PlanZheroes Sep 24, 5:04pm via web

    Our very own Maria Ana is presenting the @PlanZheroes approach to surplus food at the Knowledge Cafe #LewesKCafe tonight 7pm - @LeMagasin

  4. warblefly Sep 24, 7:38pm via web

    @LeMagasin_ #LewesKCafe What to do, what to do… this event is happening at the same time as the Transition Town Lewes social. Both? Why not.

  5. Answer to the picture questionTalking Stick
    Used throughout meeting to ensure everyone who wants to speak can have their say and prevents people talking across each other.
  6. @LeMagasin_ is kindly offering lovely food and great wine to the attendees of PlanZheroes #LewesKCafe ow.ly/i/XK2Y
  7. aguilarinterior Sep 24, 7:39pm via HootSuite

    Can PlanZheroes type approach work in Lewes? #LewesKCafe

  8. Plan Zheroes examined:

  9. aguilarinterior Sep 24, 7:35pm via HootSuite

    PlanZheroes r meeting with The Good Gym and hope to use them to distribute the surplus food to where it is needed #LewesKCafe