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The 10 weirdest Harvest foodbank offerings

By Alexandra Khan | 10 October 2014 | Comments (4)

How to pickle walnuts - creative commons licence - by pikerslanefarm

You might have seen a steadily increasing array of items appearing on your Harvest table at church in the last few weeks. Heinz Baked Beans stacked to the rafters alongside endless boxes of Kellogg's Corn Flakes - these have become the expected signs of thanksgiving at this time of year.

Most churches will send these goods to a local Foodbank, who in turn distribute it to those that need it most in the local community. Our gratitude at Harvest transforms into generosity. And it makes an incredible difference.

To celebrate Harvest this year, Stewardship asked Jolene at the Trussell Trust Foodbank to tell us the top ten weirdest donations they've ever received. Move aside, baked beans, these items take the biscuit:

The top ten weirdest Foodbank donations:


  1. A jar of pickled stags head
  2. Belugar caviar
  3. Half a bag of cold chips
  4. A tin of curried haggis
  5. A bag of chicken blood
  6. A packet of dried empty snail shells
  7. Pickled walnuts
  8. Octopus pieces
  9. Tinned cheese
  10. A tin of crispy baby clams with anchovies


Jolene said that the Foodbank was incredibly grateful for every donation...even the - well - slightly bizarre ones. "Surprisingly, octopus came up three times!" she said. ‘We’re continually delighted by the generosity of everyone who donates, even when they give stag’s head!’

You can find out more about the Trussell Trust here.


What does Harvest mean to you this year? Has your church donated to a Foodbank? Let us know in the comments below.

"How to pickle walnuts" Image used under Creative Commons Licence, by PikersLaneFarm


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Posted by Alexandra Khan

Alexandra is a digital marketing executive for Stewardship. Originally trained in music, she went on to spend a few years in the videogames industry before making the leap to the NFP sector. Follow her on Twitter: @alxkhn


Charles January

October 16, 2014 3:50 PM
Among many splendid items that we had donated via a school's Harvest festival were two packets. Both were sealed sanitary bags from a Novotel Hotel - one contained a selection of tea bags and the other a selection of sugar sachets, both the type you find in your hotel room!


October 19, 2014 8:42 AM
Who knows what it cost people to give these items? Trusssel Trust get it spot on by being grateful for all donations, but it feels like the article's poking fun at the people who gave them.
David Walliams wrote an excellent book about someone who would have been very grateful for delicacies such as caviar and picked walnuts in his food box; I'm sure there are plenty of other Mr Stinks out there too.

Anne Miles

February 13, 2016 8:24 AM
We should not judge why theses items were given but gives thanks for everything.
I Pray whoever received these weird and wonderful donations were delighted with an alternative to the three loaves and two fishes story in the bible.
it certainly is a talking point!!

dottie g

February 14, 2016 1:51 AM
My Episcopal church is located in a Military town in Arizona. We donate to help the men and women on the Army Fort with food, household supplies and baby items in what we call: Chaplain's Food locker. Each month, a representative of our church in charge of this ministry calls the Chaplain on Fort and makes arrangements to deliver the by then overflowing Food locker. At Thanksgiving and Easter we donate Money in a jar designated to Turkeys or Hams for the Troops. This contribution is also given to the Fort Chaplain for distribution as he sees fit. We are also involved with Thanksgivin/'Christrmas food boxes and blankets for an Apache Indian reservation. We donate time and baby supplies to another church who hosts a Children's Clinic for disabled children from across the border once a month. Our congregation is always supporting the SAlvation Army lunches with volunteers and food service. This church is most generous when it comes to giving for these and other outreach projects which pop up from time to time. As one of the leaders of this church I personally am quite
proud of us-especially since we are , for the most part, an aging congregation.

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