Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Waste war

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Excellent work on food waste from Kerry McCarthy, Labour's MP for Bristol East. The Post reports that she has launched a campaign to prevent surplus food from supermarkets from being thrown away.

Kerry McCarthy was today due to introduce legislation that would place a legal duty on companies to donate excess food to charities.

Her Food Waste Bill, which was due to be presented to Parliament this afternoon, has already received cross-party support, including from Green leader Caroline Lucas and Tory Zac Goldsmith. If no objections are lodged, it will progress to the next stage of the legislative process.

Under the Bristol East MP's proposed changes, barriers that are stopping organisations from donating food, like fears over legal liability, would be swept away.

Incentives would be put in place to persuade smaller companies to take part, while food that is unfit for humans would be given to livestock....' (more)

Kerry’s Bill begins to tackle one part of the food waste problem but there’s still a lot to do on food waste as a whole. There is concern about rising food prices yet 33% of the food we buy is thrown away ie one bag in every three! I'm not a fan of big supermarkets. They are a part of the food waste problem certainly but it’s clear that there are food waste and efficiency issues all the way along the chain from soil to shops to home to plate to soil again and each of us must take some responsibility.
Of course not all those who complain of or worry about rising food prices will also be wasteful but levels of food waste are so high that there must be a good deal of hypocrisy out there. This is a problem of lack of awareness but also a problem of plenty and of affluence. Where shortage and poverty are greatest waste is highly likely to be smallest, but shortage/poverty is generally not now the case in the UK and so wasteful habits and cultures have grown. We need to establish a thrifty culture.

Great tips and advice on cutting food waste, saving money and enjoying food from Love food hate waste.