FPA COMMENT ON EFRA INQUIRY INTO FOOD WASTE IN ENGLAND
Executive Director Martin Kersh said:
“We agree with the overall conclusion of the EFRA Inquiry, food waste is a scandal. We also welcome many of the recommendations contained within the report but feel the report’s headlines overly focuses attention on supermarkets and the hospitality and foodservice sectors whereas it is clear the greatest opportunities for reducing food waste exist within households, which accounts for 71% of food waste.
“A number of recommendations proposed by the FPA are included such as the need to review ‘best before’ labelling and to ensure WRAP has the funding to continue and develop its excellent Love Food Hate Waste campaign and Courtauld 2025 agreement and to develop further food waste reduction initiatives.
“The Inquiry report failed to recognise the achievements of the Hospitality & Foodservice Agreement in achieving the food waste reduction target for its signatories, many of whom already implement food surplus and waste management plans. The Agreement was absorbed into Courtauld 2025 however more funding to WRAP would enable this programme to be extended to the foodservice sector beyond the original signatories. The sector has the task of encouraging more consumers to take their leftovers home and communicating that this is socially acceptable.
“We agree with encouraging retailers to redistribute surplus food however caution must be exercised to ensure charities and the voluntary sector are not provided with more food than they can handle. The Committee calls for a doubling of the redistribution of surplus food, however the skill is in ensuring recipient organisations receive exactly what they require and are not left with the problem of dealing with waste.
“It is encouraging to see the report recognises the role packaging has to play in reducing food waste and we would have liked to have seen this given even greater prominence. However the report does underline the need to explain this to consumers and for the industry and the brands to achieve greater communication of the Fresher for Longer message.
“All in all there is much to commend in the report and we sincerely hope the momentum of the report will not be lost by the time the next government is formed.”