AHA MEDIA visits Quest Food Exchange Store on Hastings Street in Vancouver Downtown Eastside (DTES)


AHA MEDIA visits Quest Food Exchange Store on East Hastings Street by Gore in Vancouver Downtown Eastside (DTES). It is a  very affordable place to buy groceries.  For example, a bag of buns is only 10 cents! One must have a Quest membership  card to be able to shop at Quest and most shoppers are referred by Welfare or other social service agencies.

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The Quest Food Exchange is operated by the Quest Outreach Society, a registered not-for-profit organization founded in 1990. The mandate of Quest Food Exchange is to pick up non-marketable food from every sector of the food industry and redistribute it to those in need, benefiting individuals, communities and the environment. In its 2007/2008 fiscal year, Quest collected $7.12 million worth of food from 343 food suppliers. This rescued food was diverted to Lower Mainland social service agency partners for distribution. Quest now serves more than 244 social service agencies feeding 40,000 people each month.


Individuals: We provide food to kitchens serving homeless and street people in Vancouver’s downtown eastside; we prepare hot meals in our own kitchens that are distributed through various outreach programs; and we distribute low-cost, high-quality food to individuals referred by social service agencies.

Communities: We supply food to hundreds of outreach programs ranging from neighbourhood houses, women’s shelters, halfway houses, recovery centres, street youth, and school lunch programs, and more. This not only helps feed the people they serve, but it also enables these organizations to focus on their unique mission to serve the community.

The environment: By diverting food from the landfill, Quest prevented the release of 3,290 metric tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalents last year. We also recycle food packaging, and help turn food waste into animal feed and compost.


Quest’s service area in B.C. currently extends throughout the Lower Mainland, including Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, North Vancouver, Richmond, Surrey, the Tri-cities and Maple Ridge.

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Below are happy testimonials from area residents:

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Below is Peter Davies of AHA MEDIA  enjoying his time at Quest Food Exchange Store

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  1. August 28, 2009 at 12:27 am

    that looks like about $10 worth of groceries Peter’s got there … such bargains!!

  2. August 28, 2009 at 7:00 am

    Hi Gena 🙂 It was actually under $7 dollars for about a week’s worth of groceries !!

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