Monday Moaning

Food wastage, one of the shocking failures of the system.

The way we shop must change. The way supermarkets present food must change. The way businesses calculate the customer needs must change.

The whole system needs an urgent overhaul.

I am against too many laws, we have far too many in some areas, but not enough in others.

Tesco says almost 30,000 tonnes of food ‘wasted’

Tesco estimated that, across the UK food industry, 40% of apples were wasted, as were just under half of bakery items

Supermarket giant Tesco has revealed it generated almost 30,000 tonnes of food waste in the first six months of 2013.

Using its own data and industry-wide figures, it also estimated that, across the UK food industry, 68% of salad to be sold in bags was wasted – 35% of it thrown out by customers.

And it estimated 40% of apples and 47% of bakery items were wasted in the UK.

The retailer is introducing measures to reduce wastage including developing promotions for smaller bags of salad.

The latest figures published by the Waste and Resources Action Programme (Wrap) in 2011 suggested about 15 million tonnes of food goes to waste each year in the UK.

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Opinion:

Quite frankly, the idea of salad in a bag is the epitome of laziness. It shouldn’t be allowed. Buy a lettuce or a cabbage!

I have seen trays of salad veges in my local supermarket. R$5.00 for a family size salad; turn around and there’s a whole  cabbage for R$0.80, and there’s no polystyrene tray or clingwrap.

It takes about the same time to unwrap the salad tray as it does to cut the cabbage.

Then there’s the quality of the cabbage, most of what I have seen are the parts salvaged from rotting produce; tear off the sad yellow leaves and cut the rest up for salad.

If 40% of the apples are wasted, then they’re buying too many apples.

It’s high time that supermarkets were fined, and heavily, for wasting food. Not just supermarkets but all food retail outlets.

To add to the pot, companies make and market big portions to make people buy more than they need. The customer then has to eat it all (obesity) or chuck what’s left out (wastage).

It’s time that these practices were stopped.

Update!

From The Guardian

Why does anyone buy pre-washed, bagged salad?

Well, obviously, because it looks so fresh and lovely and it’s so clean and convenient, it must be good for you, never mind that it costs a fortune. And because ignorance is bliss. Now, a professor from Imperial College London has gone and ruined it by warning that food-poisoning cases are likely to increase as people buy more salad this way. Pre-washed doesn’t mean safe to eat, he said. It can just mean “looks clean but actually is contaminated with salmonella or E coli”.

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12 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by smallftprints on October 21, 2013 at 1:47 pm

    Those prepackaged veggies are also “treated” to extend their life … they are often bathed in a chlorine-based solution. Personally, I’d rather not have chemicals in my salad. 🙂

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  2. The amount of food wasted in the US far exceeds the amounts in the UK. I was very dismayed when I entered my local grocery store one day to find they had replaced most of the produce with a refrigerated case for prepackaged salads, and bagged cut up veggies. It was way more expensive than the veggies or lettuces you could buy loosely. Upon asking why I was told the change was due to the fact that most people preferred the bagged produce and by making the switch it was saving them money over having to toss out the unsold produce. The result is that there is much less produce I can find that isn’t bagged or a GM substance. I have increased what I grow to make up for what I can’t find and so are many others which isn’t helping to change the trends but will most-likely result in the grocery stores catering to those who want the convenience and pushing the rest of us out to find or grow our own.

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    • >lsf, that must be considering the larger population. I generally shop at two supermarkets, one has a lot of packaged produce, I don’t buy produce from there and have told the sector manager why. I prefer my produce from the fruit and vege shop that doesn’t do this.

      AV

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      • When you take into account the total food waste it’s amazing there is anything to buy. Food is rejected from the growers if the produce isn’t the perfect shape or color, then there is waste at the distribution centers, waste from rot during transportation, then the grocery stores. Then it is estimated that close to half of what is bought spoils before it is eaten at home. I don’t recall the dollar amount of household waste but it’s really high.

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      • It seems to me that the food industry is among the most wasteful in the world.

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  3. A sorry state of affairs AV – makes me feel sick inside! Even more reason to buy direct from the farmers, shop at Farmer’s Markets or even better – to grow it yourself! Interesting post – thanks!

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  4. Posted by Alex Jones on October 22, 2013 at 7:24 am

    I take advantage of heavy discounting by retail stores such as Tesco at the end of each day, which cuts my monthly food bill in half. The food waste is a scandal.

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  5. I heard Marks & Spencer’s make their sandwich makers throw away TWO slices from EACH end of the loaf so that all the sandwiches are perfectly square. Apparently they’ve never heard of croutons, so all four slices _per loaf_ end up in the bin.

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