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    Top companies call for mandatory food waste reporting

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    Anti-food waste organisation Too Good To Go, in partnership with the British Retail Consortium (BRC), has published an open letter signed by over 30 leading companies from the UK’s food, retail, and manufacturing sectors, advocating for mandatory public food waste reporting.

    The letter is signed by leading retail companies like One Stop, Aldi, Marks & Spencer, Lidl, Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Waitrose and numerous others. The letter, addressed to Steve Barclay, the Secretary of State for the Department for Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs, calls for the introduction of mandatory public food waste reporting.

    With more than a third of all food produced currently going to waste, the urgency of tackling food waste has been recognised across the food sector. Food waste contributes 10 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions, and pre and post farm gate food waste costs £21.8 billion annually to the UK economy.

    While acknowledging the progress made under the Courtauld Commitment and other initiatives, these companies emphasise the necessity of mandatory reporting to drive meaningful change and encourage more action to be taken across the industry – through more data-driven strategies, driving efficiencies, and fostering collaboration and economic growth.

    “We’re delighted to see the strong level of industry support for the introduction of mandatory food waste reporting”, says Jamie Crummie, co-founder of Too Good To Go. 

    “The stark reality is that a staggering 40% of all food produced globally goes to waste. In 2024 there is no room for half-hearted measures or commitments a decade away. The Government has an opportunity to lead the way in the fight against food waste by introducing mandatory food waste reporting and we hope it will seize this chance.”

    Andrew Opie, director of food & sustainability at the BRC, adds, “Mandatory Food Waste reporting is a key step in reducing food waste, helping retailers to understand their waste hotspots and where surplus food can be redistributed.

    “While most retailers already report voluntarily through WRAP’s Food Waste Reduction Roadmap, mandatory reporting will enable greater transparency across the supply chain. Retailers will continue to engage with the Government to ensure that the system works for all stakeholders, and that it aligns across the four UK nations.”

    Liz Fox, national sustainability director at Aldi UK, says, “It is important that we tackle the critical issue of food waste as an industry, and mandatory food waste reporting would be a significant step forward in doing just that. Food waste reporting, and analysing opportunities for improvements, has already helped us achieve one of our food waste targets early – and allowed us to be even bolder in setting a new waste-reduction goal.”

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