Tesco launches guide to counter 8,490 tonnes of Easter food waste

With new research revealing that £58.4 million worth of leftovers are forecasted to fill bins across Britain this Easter, Tesco has launched a guide on how to reduce food waste this Easter.

The study, compiled by Tesco and environmental campaign group Hubbub, finds holidays cause a surge in food waste, with over a quarter (26 per cent) of people throwing more food away during holidays, including Christmas, Eid, Easter and Diwali.

Food waste8,490 tonnes of food are projected to go to waste this Easter, including approximately 6.8 million hot cross buns, an amount that equates to 550 tonnes and costs £2.6 million.

In addition to this, over the course of a typical Easter, British households tend to waste 9.5 million slices of leftover roast meat, 19 million leftover potatoes and 20 million leftover portions of vegetables.

This adds to the carbon emissions caused by the UK's food waste, which stacks up to 25 million tonnes.

In spite of this, 25 per cent do not feel that household food waste contributes to greenhouse gas emissions and climate change.

To combat this, Tesco has launched a No Time For Waste website to aid people in their reduction of food waste.

Tesco hopes that in using the insights gained from its 2020 trial No Time For Waste Challenge, households will be more knowledgeable in how to save food and reduce waste by up to 76 per cent.

Ahead of the COP26 UN climate conference, Tesco hopes that its online guide will help the public cut down on household food waste over this Easter period.

The guide offers simple steps and easy tips to help people plan their shops, store their food, and use up leftovers.

At present, only 41 per cent of people surveyed take advantage of their Easter leftovers for another meal.

Tesco is encouraging people to use their leftovers, and also inspire one-fifth (19 per cent) of respondents, who keep leftovers in the fridge for a few days before throwing them away, to make use of them.

Tesco Campaigns Director Kené Umeasiegbu commented: “Cutting food waste doesn’t have to be difficult, and it can help families to save money while making a huge contribution to fighting climate change.

“Households that have taken part in our food waste challenge have cut food waste by 76% by making small changes to how they plan, store and use food, so we’re keen to make the most of these learnings to help more people save food waste from the bin.”

Aoife Allen, Head of Food at Hubbub said: “The Covid crisis saw a real shift in food habits, with many people valuing their food more than ever and learning new food skills.

“Still, around one in four of us see a spike in waste at home during holidays such as Easter so we’re sharing some top tips for making the most of our food in these moments.

“Simple actions such as planning before shopping and knowing what to do with leftovers make a huge difference to our budgets and are a brilliant way to do our bit for the environment. These tips aren’t just for Easter – they will see us through the rest of the year too.”