In UK, in order to take some action on food waste in Britain’s supply chain, more than a dozen retailers, manufacturers, wholesalers, charities and industry bodies, have come together to ensure that the food is not wasted, instead the edible and healthy food is redistributed to those in need.
The supermarkets failed to meet the targets in reducing food waste, due to which there were more and more hungry people in UK. Hence a working group named British Retail Consortium and the Food and Drink Federation and Government waste action group WRAP had been launched.
The main objective of WRAP is to research and provide data on the amount of food redistributed from the store. The group will also provide a plan of action by discussing about the present systems and provide possible solutions required in order to increase food redistribution in UK.
Increasing food redistribution will help the poor people in the society and also stops wastage of good food. By preventing waste, it not only saves money in tough economic times but is also a means of environmental savings, according to Andy Dawe, head of food and drink at WRAP and chair of the food redistribution industry working group.
The UK food and drink supply chain disposes of 6.5 million tonnes of food and drink annually, as per the estimations made by WRAP. The food which is wasted is of good quality, edible food, but even then they are unnecessarily thrown onto landfill sites, left to generate tonnes of toxic, harmful greenhouse gasses.
Some of the examples of food items that are wasted include fresh fruit and vegetables, long life products such as pasta or condensed milk that has damaged packaging, or everyday items that is been over ordered.
Every year, around 2 billion tonnes of food i.e. half of the food produced in the world is wasted and the reason behind this is the consumer demand for cosmetically perfect food, according to the report given by the UK’s Institution of Mechanical Engineers.
Some of the companies which were a part of new food redistribution working group are the major supermarket chains namely Asda and Morrisons along with food brand’s Kellogg’s. Supermarkets, such as Morrisons, are trying not to reject the food that is the wrong shape. In London, People’s Supermarket was launched 3 yrs which sells the goods that are rejected by the big retail chains.
In UK, around 50% of the excess food is been wasted by the consumers and around 6% is thrown away by the supermarkets, as per the report given by British Retail Consortium (BRC). As per the report, grocery supply chain sector had a target of reducing 5% of the total packaging waste, but in 2010 this sector was able to reduce only 0.4 per cent which was equivalent of 10,000 tonnes.