When Phumlani Manomela, one of FoodForward SA’ s most experienced truck drivers, climbed into our brand new 17-ton Fuso truck on Thursday, 18 March, he took an additional 4,850kg of surplus food that we previously had to deliver with a second trip to the Garden Route.
Phumlani has been working for FoodForward SA (FFSA) for the past eight years and had been used to driving 8-tonner trucks. Luckily, as part of our growth plan, he was upskilled a few years ago to attain his extra heavy-duty license. We continually upskill our staff to meet future demands.
It took two competency training sessions for Phumlani to master the finer details of driving the new truck. Once this was done and dusted and the fleet management unit installed, Phumlani could look forward to taking the new truck on its maiden journey to George.
When he and his team members, Dylan and Andrew arrived in George, they were greeted by excited representatives of 18 beneficiary organisations from George and Oudtshoorn, coming to collect their monthly food provisions. Through these two mobile rural depots (MRDs), FoodForward SA reaches approximately 12,000 vulnerable people, daily.
Our decision to purchase a brand new 17-tonner for the Cape Town branch followed on the benefits we experienced from purchasing a 20-tonner Hino refrigerated truck and trailer for our Johannesburg branch in 2020. The 20-tonner carries a load of at least 20 pallets of food and does monthly inter-branch transfers to Limpopo and Mpumalanga. This truck’s massive capacity enables us to distribute food to about 16,000 vulnerable beneficiaries in these ‘remote’ provinces, monthly.
Like our Hino truck and trailer in Johannesburg, the new 17-tonner Fuso truck with trailer carries both dry and refrigerated (frozen meats, fresh fruit and vegetables) food items. Considering our goal of reaching more rural communities, this is a huge return on investment.
More FoodForward SA staff are receiving Code-14 driving lessons. This is part of our human resources plan that allows us to grow our capacity and align it with the scaling of our operations nationally, to meet the demand of addressing food insecurity.
We wouldn’t be able to travel these long distances to feed people without our generous fuel donor, Engen. Thank you, Engen, for your partnership and support of our foodbanking operations!
Your business can also be part of FoodForward SA’s surplus food recovery journey. Email Fayrene at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.