To quote Love Food Hate Waste; “We throw away 7.2 million tonnes of food and drink from our homes every year, the majority of which could have been eaten. It’s costing us £12bn a year and is bad for the environment too.”
When it comes to wasting food, we’re all guilty of it; whether it is overfilling a plate and finding that we can’t eat it all and chucking the remainder away as there isn’t enough to save for a second meal. Or there’s opening a pot of pesto and finding that we just can’t get through the entire pot before it’s supposed to be eaten. If we think about it, there’s at least one item of food that we are guilty of throwing away each time we buy it. The one item I am constantly guilty of throwing away? Tomatoes. It doesn’t matter how much I try and get through the packet before they go soft and squidgy, there is always at least a handful of tomatoes that will find their way into the bin.
Worldwide about one-third of all food produced – equivalent to 1.3 billion tonnes – gets lost or wasted in the food production and consumption systems, according to data released by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO). Wasting food means wasting money both at the household level and in businesses throughout the supply chain – about $200 billion annually in industrialised regions.
In the UK the average family could save £680 per year, and the UK hospitality sector could save £724 million per year by tackling food waste. While the value of waste in the manufacture and retail of food and drink in the UK is £5bn. Food is a valuable resource and yet in the UK about 15 million tonnes of food is thrown away every year. Almost 50 percent of this comes from our homes. Action needs to be taken.