Fifteen million tonnes of food waste in UK is 'repugnant

S U N D AY 06 APRIL 2014 A House of Lords committee report has said it is a!so"ute"# shoc$ed at the sca"e of food %aste i& the 'U a&d ca""s o& supermar$ets( farmers a&d i&di)idua"s to do more to stop it*

Globally, consumers in industrialised nations waste up to 222 million tonnes of food a year, which is equivalent to nearly the entire level of net food production of Sub-Saharan Africa The Lords E !ommittee said that food waste in the " and E was #clearly

a hu$e issue# and condemned $overnments for not doin$ enou$h to tac%le it& Around '( million tonnes of food in the across the E " and at least )* million tonnes

is wasted as a whole each year&

!ommittee chairwoman +aroness Scott of ,eedham -ar%et said. #/ood waste in the E and the " is clearly a hu$e issue& ,ot only is it morally

repu$nant, but it has serious economic and environmental implications& #The fact that )* million tonnes of food is wasted across the E each year

shows the e0tent of the problem and e0plains why we are callin$ for ur$ent action& Globally, consumers in industrialised nations waste up to 222 million tonnes of food a year, which is equivalent to nearly the entire level of net food production of Sub-Saharan Africa&# Lady Scott says the committee is callin$ for the new European !ommission, due to be setup in ,ovember, should construct a five-year strate$y to deal with the problem& +ood %aste ,reater car!o& footpri&t tha& US road tra&sportatio& The scale of the problem is so bad, that it is believed that carbon footprint $enerated by the world1s food waste is more than double that created by the S road transportation industry&

Lady Scott tar$eted supermar%ets to reduce #buy one $et one free# deals to reduce e0cess consumption which they believes encoura$es wasta$e& She also said that the supermar%ets should not cancel food ordered from farmers that has already been $rown, as perfectly edible food is #then plou$hed strai$ht bac% into the field&# 2t is also su$$ested that the $overnment ta%es steps to ensure that retailers send unsold food fit for consumption to food ban%s instead of bein$ turned into compost or sent to buried in landfill sites& She said. #The " $overnment have a role to play in encoura$in$ co-

operation throu$hout the supply chain& They can also consider whether ta0 incentives mi$ht be used to encoura$e retailers to ensure unsold food that

is still fit for human consumption is actually eaten by people, for e0ample by wor%in$ with food ban%s, rather than sent to compost or for ener$y recovery, or even landfill, as is often the case at present& -e %ere shoc$ed at the e.te&t of food %aste i& the 'U* 'specia""# ,i)e& the curre&t eco&omic cha""e&,es the 'U faces( it is a& a!so"ute"# shoc$i&, %aste of resources* /Lady Scott La&dfi"" !a&0 Earlier this month the thin% tan% the Green Alliance estimated that sendin$ five %ey materials to recyclin$ instead of landfill sites could save the 34&5bn pounds and create tens of thousands of 6obs& 7ustin +enton, head of resource stewardship at Green Alliance, said. #The " is currently buryin$ billions of pounds of value in landfill and losin$ out on thousands of s%illed 6obs& #Landfill is also a ma6or source of $reenhouse $as emissions& 2f we diverted all biode$radable materials to recyclin$ it would save money and cut !82 emissions equivalent to those from all in the homes in -anchester, +irmin$ham and Leeds&# The call to divert the five materials from landfill, improve collection systems, and create new infrastructure for recyclin$ and re-manufacturin$ in En$land comes after Scotland announced a landfill ban, while 9ales is consultin$ on the issue& +annin$ the products, which have a value if they are reused or recycled, from landfill will %eep ') million tonnes of waste out of the $round each year, the Green Alliance analysis said& +ut 6obs and carbon savin$s cannot be created while landfill remains an easy option and systems for collectin$ the products for reuse and recyclin$ are limited, the thin% tan% said& "

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