© Wiener Tafel

As Austria’s oldest food bank, the Wiener Tafel rescues up to three tons of food per day that would be thrown away and supplies around 19 000 people affected by poverty with these edible, immaculate donations of goods.

The donation-financed social and environmental association collects surplus food from trade, industry and agriculture, which is no longer intended for sale and would therefore be destroyed. These products are distributed by the more than 350 volunteers of the Wiener Tafel immediately and free of charge to 117 social institutions in greater Vienna, where they benefit 19 000 people affected by poverty.

The Wiener Tafel helps to protect the environment, to conserve valuable resources and to avoid mountains of garbage. Social institutions can make their food supply more diverse and healthier for people in need.

The vision of the Wiener Tafel is a socially fair world in which hunger and poverty have been defeated. That is why the Wiener Tafel advocates for the cause that everyone in our society should be able to enjoy the human right to food.

The Wiener Tafel thus forms a bridge from abundance to demand between different social segments and interest groups. The basis of the social transfer work is the successful cooperation with trade, industry, agriculture, science, politics, administration, civil society initiatives and in particular with social services.

Projects of Wiener Tafel

TafelHaus – food rescue on a large scale

For the first time in the 19-year history of the Wiener Tafel, very large amounts of food can be accepted, stored and sorted according to need: in June 2017, the Wiener Tafel opened a food sorting and storage centre called TafelHaus at one of Vienna’s wholesale market places. Over the course of three years, the amount of food rescued will increase by 100% through this centre. This means that twice as many people affected by poverty can be supplied with fresh, healthy food. The establishment of the much-needed food storage capacity has been made possible by the support of businesses and private donors. However, the need for food and hygiene products is not being covered yet. At the same time, very large quantities of edible food are still being thrown away. That is why Austria’s oldest food bank is developing new ways for social transfer with its new logistics concept at TafelHaus.

Odor & Taste Lab – discovering food as a valuable resource

Discovering food as a valuable resource through playful exploration, personal experience and sensual impressions for children and adolescents and increasing their competence in dealing with their nutritional basis – this is the challenge that the Wiener Tafel faces with its Odor & Taste Lab. Central parts of the programmes are the use of one’s own sensory perceptions and the personal gain of knowledge through independent and active participation.

The main focus of the Odor & Taste Lab is that participants can integrate the insights into their own lives: encouraging balanced, healthy nutrition and a reflected handling of food as a precious basis of life are the goals of the Wiener Tafel Odor & Taste Lab.

Meaningful Marmalade

Volunteers of the Wiener Tafel together with asylum seekers rescue fruit from being thrown away and refine the good fruits, under the professional guidance of the jam manufactory Unverschwendet, into jam with social added value or Meaningful Marmalade.

WienerTafelBox – rescue food and do good

The TafelBox is a food transport box made of bio-plastic, which one can use to independently rescue leftover food at the end of an event or in a restaurant, in order to consume it at a later time. Food as a valuable resource will be saved from destruction and at the same time people affected by poverty will get fresh, healthy food: from every TafelBox used, 20 cents will be donated to the Austrian food banks. With one euro, the food banks can supply up to ten people suffering from poverty with rescued food.

Annual results 2017 at a glance

  • 615 241 kg rescued food
  • approx. 19 000 people in need and 117 social facilities were supplied
  • 350 volunteers and 12 full-time employees jointly achieved a higher number of hours worked in 2017
  • 24 770 volunteering hours (in comparison: 21 362 volunteering hours in 2016)
  • 1 622 delivery routes
  • fleet: four auxiliary delivery vehicles, three of them with freezer function
  • The investment costs for the TafelHaus of around 100 000 € were covered – around 300 corporate and private donors supported the project. However, more supporters are now needed for the maintenance and the further expansion of the TafelHaus operation.


Wiener Tafel – Verein für sozialen Transfer

Simmeringer Hauptstraße 2-4, 1110 Vienna

E-Mail: office@wienertafel.at

Website: www.wienertafel.at

This post is also available in: German