Waitrose & Partners Weekend Issue 639

2 2 MARCH 2023 News&Views ‘ TO ME , I T ’ S SORT OF FUNNY THAT WAST ING FOOD IS NOT TABOO. I T ’ S ONE OF THE LAST ENV IRONMENTAL ILLS THAT YOU CAN JUST GET AWAY WI TH’ JonathanBloom, journalist and author FOOD WASTE One third of all food in the UK is wasted, with 70% coming fromhouseholds. This leads to significant environmental damage. Anna Shepard looks at howwe canmake a difference by adjusting howwe shop and eat Global food waste produces more greenhouse gas emissions than all commercial flights, and if food waste were a country, it would have the third biggest carbon footprint in the world after China and the US. When you throw away food, it also wastes the energy and resources required to produce, process and transport it. Yet public awareness of the impact food waste has on climate change is less widespread than that of fashion and aviation. Research by climate action charityWrap found that, while 81%of people in the UK are concerned about climate change, only 32% see a clear link between it and food, compared withmore than half whomake the link between aviation and climate change. In 2023, we still throw out around a third of our food, with themajority ending up in landfill, where it generates methane, amore potent greenhouse gas than CO2. This year’s FoodWaste ActionWeek, organised by Wrap, runs from6-12March, and is themedWin. Don’t Bin. It highlights the damaging e ects of food waste and its financial frivolity. Wrap says a quarter of the food we waste is due to cooking, preparing or serving toomuch, costing households £3.5 billion each year. But progress is beingmade. Waitrose conducted a recent survey withWrap showing that nearly a third of its customers were doingmore pre-shop planning, including checking cupboards, fridges and freezers, so they only buy what they need. Here are some key facts and easy solutions to help reduce food waste in your home. CALLING TIME ON 20M SLICES OF BREAD 4.4M POTATOES 3.1M GLASSES OF MILK 2.7M CARROTS 2.2M SLICES OF HAM 1.2M TOMATOES 1M ONIONS 900,000 BANANAS 800,000 APPLES According to the latest figures fromWrap, every day in UK homes we discard... What we throwaway France The Food Sustainability Index, a regular survey of 60 countries according to how sustainable their attitude to food is, has repeatedly given France top spot. It was the rst country to ban supermarkets from throwing out or destroying edible food in 2016. Instead, large food stores and supermarkets must donate their surplus to charities or other good causes. Spain A new law comes into force this year obliging bars and restaurants to o er doggy bags for leftover food. They must tell customers the option is available. It’s part of a drive to reduce waste, outlined in Spain’s Food Waste Prevention Law, that includes a tax on non-reusable packaging and calls for supermarkets to donate more leftover food to charitable causes. UnitedKingdom Targeting food waste in supply chains and businesses, the UK led the way with its Food Waste Reduction Roadmap in 2018, which outlined how the food industry could halve food waste at retail and consumer level by 2030. More than half the UK’s large food businesses, including Waitrose, report annually on how they prevent food entering the waste stream. Countries leading progress Cover Illustration: Nicholas Stevenson/Folioart