This week WRAP debuted their Food Action Waste week, a brand new initiative to help tackle the issue of food waste and the problems associated with it. As stated on WRAP’s website ‘around a third of the food we produce worldwide is lost or wasted and it’s having a significant impact on climate change. In fact, it contributes a staggering 8–10% of total man-made greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. A recent global survey has shown that more than 900 million tonnes of food are thrown away every year and a shocking 60% of this waste is from households.
The growing issue of food waste has seen organisations, local authorities, charities and businesses all begin to take action against the issue. This has promoted WRAP to launch Food Action Week, amongst its many other waste tackling campaigns. Major brands and supermarket such as Greggs, ASDA, Aldi, Nestle & KFC (amongst hundreds of others) have shown their support towards the cause.
WRAP shared a worrying statement that ‘Two-thirds of Brits don’t see a link between food waste and climate change’. This unawareness of the impacts could be the reason for the high waste levels, as consumers aren’t seeing the issue. Although many local authorities are now offering food waste collections, this number is still a minority and for those who do not understand the benefits of food waste recycling, these food caddies become obsolete.
In the UK alone the greenhouse gas emissions from food waste equal that of ten million cars. Looking at greenhouse gas emissions as a whole, food waste contributes to around 10%. This issue is only going to worsen if action, such as these awareness campaigns are not carried out.
It seems the awareness of food recycling is in short supply compared to other forms of recycling, for example, paper and plastic. To help tackle the issue, awareness of the issue needs to be raised and there are simple steps that can be taken to do this:
- Awareness days like Food Action Waste Week, need to be supported and shared – raising awareness from the very source.
- All Local Authorities should offer food waste collection services alongside their other kerbside recycling.
- Better education on the benefits of food waste recycling needs to be published and become more easily accessible.
- Supermarkets and food brands could start campaigns themselves to help cut down on food waste – a smart buying or reward scheme could be introduced to help consumers shop without wastage.
These four ideas are amongst the many that would help to tackle the issue of food waste, we ourselves have a range of downloadable documents which will give advice on how to reduce your waste consumption.
Supporting brilliant campaigns such as WRAPS Food Waste Action Week is the first step to a greener and more circular planet.