SUPERMARKET chain Aldi has pledged to donate surplus goods to food banks and charities when stores close on Christmas Eve.

The company says that any leftovers in the store on December 24 will be free for charities to collect at 4pm when stores across the UK close.

A statement released by the budget supermarket, which was circulated on social media, encouraged charities and organisations to get in touch with their head office to arrange collections from any of its 520 branches.

The statement, which has since been verified as legitimate by the company's Twitter account, says an estimated 20 to 30 crates of leftover food from each of its stores will be free to good causes and those in need.

The statement added: “As our stores will shut at 4pm on Christmas Eve until the 27th of December, we will have a variety of good quality surplus food products that we wish to redistribute in support of less fortunate individuals and to prevent food going to waste.

"We are unfortunately unable to deliver products locally so it would be essential that your organisation is able to collect."

Organisations interested in receiving leftover food have until December 8 to apply by emailing or contacting Aldi’s UK head office on 01827 711800.​