Frequently Asked Questions

Is Fairbite a Foodbank?

No, you do not have to visit the foodbank to be a member of Fairbite. It operates quite differently from the foodbank because you to have to join as a member and then pay your membership fee. Also you get to choose the items you want from the shelves like in a regular shop.

Where does the food come from?

The food comes mainly from excess supermarket stocks. Often supermarkets find they have too much of a certain food or they are changing the brand or labeling or other reasons. In the past they would just throw it away but now it is available for the food club. We work with local supermarkets as well as the national charity FareShare to obtain a variety of items.

Is the food past its “Use-by” date?

No food is offered if it is past its use-by date since this might be unsafe. However, some items may be past their “Best-before” date. After the “best-before” date the flavour or texture of the food might not be as good as when new but it is still safe to eat. We will always point out to you if food is past its best before date.

Who can become a member?

The food club is intended for people and families that are struggling to pay their food bills due to low income or unexpected problems. To become a member you need to be referred by a social agency such as a housing association or children’s centre. All the agencies that issue foodbank vouchers can also sign the membership application form. There are a limited number of membership available so if the club is full you might need to go on a waiting list.

What about my food allergies?

The items will be correctly labelled with food allergy information but it is your responsibility to check the packaging to confirm suitability for your own dietary needs.

How do I pay?

When you visit the shop you pay your £2 cash at the door. You must be registered as an active member on our system and pay your £2 before you shop. If you are not a member or don’t pay your membership fee – sorry – you will not be allowed access to the shop.


We will communicate with using e-mail or text (SMS) according to your preference. Occasionally we may mail letters or other information to you.

Can I bring the family?

Parents with small children may bring them into the club while shopping but due to the limited space we may ask older children to wait outside the shop where they can be easily seen and will be safe. Also, if the shop is full, we may ask you to wait outside until the current shoppers have left.

What if I don’t visit the club for a while?

If you haven’t attended the shop for four weeks, your membership will be cancelled and offered to the next person on the waiting list. You can re-apply at a later date and your name will be added to the waiting list. If you have given us a mobile phone number or email address we will send you a warning after three weeks.