There has been a lot of debate recently about food waste at large supermarkets, and it looks like campaigners have made a little headway.
Following widening pressure from the general public, Tesco announced a groundbreaking new scheme today in which they will be donating their unsold but edible food “to those in need”.
The scheme is the result of collaboration between Irish organisation Foodcloud, British food redistribution charity FareShare and Tesco. The announcement comes just after the supermarket giant revealed that they threw away 55,400 tonnes of food last year, around 30,000 tonnes of which was edible.
The Tesco press office said that “FoodCloud is supplying its technology and expertise developed from its scheme in Ireland, while FareShare brings its knowledge of the UK charity redistribution market” and that their aim is to “offer hot meals and other support for people in food poverty.”
We understand that the scheme, which is already in existence in Ireland, is being piloted in ten Tesco stores in England with a view to rolling it out nationwide if proves to be successful.
Dave Lewis, CEO of Tesco said in a statement: “This is potentially the biggest single step we’ve taken to cut food waste, and we hope it marks the start of eliminating the need to throw away edible food in our stores.”
Lindsay Boswell, FareShare CEO said: “We understand that customers get angry when they see food being wasted in their local store. We do too and that is why we have spent 20 years developing our successful charity redistribution model.
“Our partnership with Tesco means we are already able to access surplus food from their supply chains.”
Although the cynics amongst us may argue that this is for a bit of good press in a difficult time for the company. We say fuck that, this is certainly a step in the right direction – every little helps. Now we’re looking to Waitrose, Sainsbury’s, Marks & Spencer and the rest…