Lancaster student expands 'wonky' bread box business to include naans in food waste mission

A Lancaster student who launched the world’s first ‘wonky’ bread box subscription model has added naan bread to his range of rescued baked goods.

By Gayle Rouncivell
Thursday, 17th June 2021, 4:55 am
James Eid.

James Eid, 20, who is studying business at Lancaster University, founded Earth & Wheat in March and has enjoyed huge success with subscribers signing up in their droves to his surplus bread distributor company.

He has so far rescued 30,000kg of wonky bread, all of which would have been thrown away due to appearance, size or overproduction.

James has now expanded his random and mixed variety of bread with plain and garlic flavoured naans.

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He believes naan breads will be a welcome addition to his ‘wonky’ bread boxes with curry fans up and down the country. Dishes such as Chicken Tikka Masala, for example, have been voted as the UK’s most popular dish.

However, more importantly, Eid, a fourth-generation baker, who is still only in his second year at university, says adding naan to his rescue box will help further reduce food waste as it tends to be the ‘most wasted’ out of all the breads.

Overall, 900,000 tonnes of bread are thrown away in UK households every year which equates to around 20m pieces of bread every day according to charity WRAP (Waste & Resources Action Programme), of which around four million pieces are estimated to be binned at the production stage.

James said: “Naan breads tend to be a highly wonky bread product because they have to be hand-crafted into a teardrop shape, which is one of the most recognisable characteristics of naan.

“But often what happens is when the dough is stretched by hand it leads to variation in shape and size, and that could mean it discarded due to its wonky appearance. Consumers are not expecting to see a wonky or odd-looking naan bread when they pick it up at the shops.

“That is why I’m delighted we have added naans to our rescue range at Earth & Wheat. It means we can fight food waste at the production source, before the naans even reach the shops. We will continue to fight food waste with everyone’s help – one wonky box at a time.

“Many of our wonky warriors can’t wait to add one of our ‘wonky’ naans to a curry. But there are also plenty of other delicious ways to include it in a weekly meal plan. Naan bread is a perfect substitute for pizza dough, great with salads, or used as a flatbread or wrap for a wide range of exciting lunch ideas, or even as a side bread - perhaps a tear and share suitable for dipping.”

Earth & Wheat customers can subscribe weekly, fortnightly, every three weeks, or monthly for as little as £6.89 (for weekly subscriptions) including free express fresh delivery.

Every box is packed with a mixed selection of ultra fresh ‘wonky’ crumpets, pancakes, tortillas, pittas, focaccias, Greek-style flatbreads and naan breads.

For every box saved, Earth & Wheat also donates a meal to UK food banks to help fight food poverty.