Wasting food feeds climate change: IBCSD unites with Food Waste Action Week to break the cycle

UK’s second national Food Waste Action Week begins today, with Indonesia Business Council for Sustainable Development (IBCSD) joining as a partner. IBCSD will be supporting Food Waste Action Week by sharing assets and content about “Food Storage Mistakes” on IBCSD social media

The second annual Food Waste Action Week begins today, Monday 7 March. It will raise people’s awareness of the huge impact of household food waste on climate change and share practical advice, food-savvy behaviors, and tips on how we can all easily reduce the food we waste in our homes.

We throw away 6.6 million tonnes of household food waste a year in the UK. This food waste is responsible for nearly 25 million tonnes of CO2 emissions, equivalent to 5.4% of the UK’s territorial emissions. The majority, 4.5 million tonnes is food that could have been eaten and is worth approximately £14 billion (or £60 a month for an average family with two children). It requires an area almost the size of Wales to produce all the food and drink currently wasted in the UK.

IBCSD will be participating in the campaign by raising public awareness through multiple channels; Social media and website. We will also create our social media content about “Food Storage Mistakes”. Many people are unfamiliar with proper food storage techniques. Storing our food properly can help us prevent food waste, avoid foodborne illnesses and save money. We want to make ordinary citizens aware of how they store their food.

Bryan Citrasena, Project Manager for Food & Nature at IBCSD said One of the great barriers to food waste reduction in Indonesia is to shift the public mental model and behavior. There is a mindset of ‘providing more food is better than less’ which makes the portion of the food served to consumers more than what they actually want or need to eat. Lack of information on statistics and impacts also becomes the reason for high food waste in Indonesia. “IBCSD has been promoting food waste reduction through GRASP 2030 (Gotong Royong Atasi Susut & Limbah Pangan di 2030) initiative. The GRASP 2030 brings businesses and supporting actors across the food chain in Indonesia to achieve the Goal 12.3 of SDG, halving food loss and waste by 2030, thus increasing the environmental, social, and economic benefits for the participating organizations and for the country”.

Love Food Hate Waste runs an annual survey of people’s habits and knowledge around food waste. This highlighted that 81% of UK citizens are concerned about climate change, but only 32% see a clear link with food waste. The survey helped to inform the theme of the Week and the development of materials to motivate people to act. This year, Love Food Hate Waste found that the public’s relationship with its freezers has become particularly frosty with many people not knowing how to safely freeze and defrost their food.

Sarah Clayton, Love Food Hate Waste, “Getting to grips with freezing and defrosting are big factors in preventing food from going to waste at home. At a time of rising food prices alongside huge public concern about climate change, tackling food waste at home is one way we can all make a difference and save money. For the average family with children, the cost of binning food can be more than £700 per year. So, Food Waste Action Week is all about avoiding being savvy in how we store but then use our food.”

Love Food Hate Waste is keen to show that used properly, the freezer is the king of the kitchen. In fact, freezing and defrosting just three key meat items that are commonly not used in time (fresh chicken, bacon, and sausages) could reduce waste of those items by as much as 15,000 tonnes per annum. And, when it comes to defrosting, busy households can avoid a lengthy overnight defrost by using their microwave instead – as people use a toaster to defrost sliced bread from the freezer.

Working together, we can prevent food from being wasted needlessly and protect the planet.

About

Love Food Hate Waste aims to raise awareness of the need to reduce food waste and help the UK public act. It shows that by doing some easy practical everyday things in the home we can all waste less food, which will ultimately benefit the environment, and our pockets too. Love Food Hate Waste is managed by WRAP.

WRAP is a global NGO based in the UK. It is one of the UK’s top 5 environmental charities and works with governments, businesses and individuals to ensure that the world’s natural resources are used more sustainably. It is the charity leading the UK Plastics Pact (a world first), Courtauld Commitment 2030, Textiles 2030 as well as the citizen campaigns Love Food Hate Waste, Love Your Clothes, Clear on Plastics and Recycle Now. It also runs Food Waste Action Week and Recycle Week in the UK. WRAP works collaboratively and develops and delivers evidence-based, solutions to reduce the environmental cost of the food we eat, the clothes we wear and the plastic packaging we use. Founded in 2000 in the UK, WRAP now works with partners in forty countries, across six continents and is a Global Alliance Partner of The Royal Foundation’s Earthshot Prize.   

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