In 2004, Ronni Kahn established OzHarvest, an organisation with a focus on rescuing surplus produce from restaurants and caterers and delivering meals to disadvantaged communities around Australia.
As the story goes, the former event coordinator saw the immense amount of good food going to waste and set up the service to do something about it. Since she took home the 2011 Women of Style award in the Charity & Community category, OzHarvest has grown significantly—there are now nine offices around the country, and 45 vans have delivered 78 million meals to vulnerable people. The operation has also gone international, with the model introduced in the UK, South Africa and Thailand. But Kahn has always been driven to “do more”, and her goal has evolved with her business. “Whilst food rescue fills hungry bellies, I knew that education could transform lives,” says Kahn. “So we expanded our core purpose to include education programs and innovation, allowing us to create positive change for vulnerable people.”
OzHarvest is working with the Federal Government on the national target to halve food waste by 2030 with the launch of the #fightfoodwaste campaign. “It’s a big job and requires change at all levels of society, but we’re committed to doing whatever it takes. We know that consumers have the power to influence change now,” says Kahn. One way to get involved directly is by visiting Australia’s first rescued food supermarket—the OzHarvest Market in Sydney—which runs on a “take what you need, give if you can” philosophy.
You can watch Kahn in action in the upcoming independent documentary Food Fighter, which saw her trailed by a film crew for the past three years. To call her unstoppable would be an understatement—Ronni Kahn is just getting started.
Words to live by... “Be true to yourself and always act with integrity.”
The ultimate women of style... “Two Hepburn ladies— Katharine and Audrey—for their combination of strength and elegance.”