Climate Action

UK food industry commits to halving food waste

90 of the UK’s largest retailers, food producers and manufacturers have committed to ambitious targets stated in a new Food Waste Reduction Map.

  • 26 September 2018
  • Rachel Cooper

90 of the UK’s largest retailers, food producers and manufacturers have committed to ambitious targets stated in a new Food Waste Reduction Map.

The initiative, developed by IGD and WRAP, aims to drive down the UK’s annual £20 billion food waste bill which is the equivalent to more than £300 per UK citizen.

The roadmap clearly shows the actions large businesses will take to address food waste. It also sets out how these businesses can engage with customers to help reduce their food waste.

Companies signed up to the agreement include Coca Cola GB, Nestle UK and Unilever UK. Supermarkets include Waitrose, Aldi and Tesco.  Aldi have already committed to halve food waste by 2030.

WRAP is a charity that works with governments, businesses and communities to deliver practical solutions to improve resource efficiency. They are currently hosting Recycle week which commenced on Monday 24th of September.

Recycle Week is a way for the public to help to reduce the growing plastic pollution problem. By reducing food waste it means the use of plastic can also decrease.

Marcus Gover, CEO of WRAP, said: “Together, WRAP and IGD have mobilised industry leaders to create a bold sector-wide Roadmap, showing clearly what UK businesses must do. This Roadmap is hugely ambitious, and I’m delighted that the UK is the first country anywhere to set a nation-wide plan towards delivering its part in SDG 12.3.”

The first milestone set by the roadmap is to have 50 per cent of the UK’s largest 250 food businesses measuring, reporting, and acting on food waste by September 2019.

This would also help to meet the target of Courtauld 2025. This is a voluntary goal that aims to make food and drink production more sustainable. The overall target is to reduce food and drink waste arising in the UK by 20 per cent by 2025. Meeting the Courtauld 2025 targets would help the UK achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 12.3 by 2030.

Marcus Gover will also launch the Food Waste Atlas in New York.

Photo Credit: Michal Jarmoluk