Tesco publishes food waste figures

TESCO HAS become the first major UK retailer to publish a complete report of its food waste.


The supermarket giant tracked 25 of its bestselling products, from farm to fork, to assess where in the supply chain waste was occurring.


Figures revealed that 68% of salad grown for use in salad bags ended up waste, while 40% of apples, a quarter of grapes and a fifth of bananas also end up in the bin.


Tesco has now promised to develop new initiatives to reduce waste, both within its supply chain and for customers at home, such as ended multi-buy deals on salad.


Matt Simister, Tesco Commercial Director of Group Food, said: “We’ve all got a responsibility to tackle food waste and there is no quick-fix single solution.


“Little changes can make a big difference, like storing fruit and veg in right way. Families are wasting an estimated £700 a year and we want to help them to keep that money in their pockets, rather than throwing it in the bin.


“We’re playing our part too and making changes to our processes and in store. Ending multi-buy promotions on large packs of bagged salads is one way we can help, but this is just the start and we’ll be reviewing what else we can do. We’re working with our suppliers to try and cut waste at all stages of the journey from farm to fork.”


In 2011, WRAP estimated that 15 million tonnes of food waste is generated each year in the UK – with more than half coming from households – and the issue is seen as a growing international problem.


“Food waste is a global issue and collaborative action is essential if we are to successfully reduce it and reap the financial and environmental benefits of doing so,” said WRAP director Richard Swannell.


“We welcome Tesco’s approach to tackling food waste across their whole supply chain and, by identifying the hot spots, they can tackle these areas effectively.”