A Cornish campaign to help support local communities and food banks has donated a whopping 160,000 eggs so far.

The Shell Out to Help Out campaign was started by Truro-based St-Ewe Free-range Eggs and has seen an outpouring of support from the local community.

For each tray sold at their current reduced price of £3, the company are donating one carton of eggs to local food banks across Cornwall.

With the current Covid-19 pandemic exacerbating the growing issue of food poverty in Cornwall, Shell Out to Help Out has provided some welcome relief to families suffering from food-insecurity.

Nikki Owen, head of marketing at St Ewe, said: "We started the Shell Out to Help Out campaign because 52% of our business is in food services and hospitality, and when the third lockdown came along that business disappeared overnight, and you can't furlough a hen.

"We've got 180,000 of them laying eggs every single day, so to avoid food waste, keep staff employed and keep our producer farms going we've been popping up in locations all over Cornwall selling trays of 30 eggs for £3.

"We're not making any money from it, and all of our staff and volunteers are giving up their weekends, we've had local business operating throughout the week for us too so it's really just to keep people employed and things ticking over as well as keeping the hens fed."

Somerset County Gazette: 160,000 eggs have so far been donated by the campaign. Picture: St. Ewe Eggs160,000 eggs have so far been donated by the campaign. Picture: St. Ewe Eggs

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Bex Tonks, farmer and CEO of St Ewe Free Range Eggs, said: "As we are all getting used to the lock down way of life, it feels that the poultry farming industry has been hit particularly hard by this most recent one.

"Eggs are one of the most nutritious foods you can buy as well as being affordable, extremely versatile, simple to cook and easily digestible for all age groups; the perfect food for all!

"So, let’s get them out there and share this beautiful British product with those that need it most."

St Ewe are hoping as many people as possible get involved in this initiative on a national level enabling everybody, including those in need, to gain access to this incredibly nutritious and versatile food.

Nikki went on to add: "We're actually quite ashamed as a company that we hadn't realised just how bad the problem (food insecurity) was in Cornwall alone.

"There's somewhere around 30,000 families living in food poverty everyday just in Cornwall, which really is quite shocking."

At a time when record numbers of people are having to rely on foodbanks to feed them, initiatives such as this are a lifeline to people all over Cornwall, as well as across the country.

So far, St Ewe have recruited top chefs such as Guy Owen of the St Enodoc Hotel in Rock and the Rick Stein group, to volunteer their time to sell eggs in and around their local communities.

St Ewe has also partnered with local charities to help spread the word including CHAOS (Feed Cornwall), FareShare SW, The Hive and Newquay Orchard.