16 March 2017

Tesco launches new online platform to cut food waste

Tesco has announced the launch of an innovative platform which will help identify areas where food waste can be tackled.  

This week, the British multinational retailer launched its new 'hotline' to help the supermarket work directly with suppliers and producers to identify and prevent potential supply chain food waste.

The platform, which will be regularly accessed by the retailer’s 5,000 suppliers via the online community Supplier Network, will enable members to share knowledge, green the supply change and foster further innovation in food waste reduction.

The tool was designed to allow suppliers and producers to quickly access Tesco Product teams, notifying them to areas of high food waste so they can then work together to address the issue.

Supply chain food waste accounts for a substantial proportion of the nation’s food waste.

Tesco says it is committed to help halve all UK food waste by 2025.

Last summer, warmer weather meant that strawberry crop all ripened at the same time; Tesco responded with the introduction of larger boxes in its stores sold at a market leading price to avoid considerable food waste at farms.

The new hotline will help identify these issues earlier, while enabling Tesco to work directly with suppliers to identify emerging as well as the more long term food waste issues they face.

Matt Simister, Commercial Director, Fresh Food and Commodities at Tesco, said: "At Tesco, we have no time for waste, and we are committed to reducing food waste wherever it occurs, from farm to fork. The 'food waste hotline' is another little help we are making to achieve this with our suppliers. It helps our suppliers gain direct, easy access to our Product teams, and this will enable us to identify food waste hotspots and systemic issues and work in partnership to tackle them."

The news follows the unveiling of new research showing the economic benefits of tackling food waste.

Dave Lewis, Chief Executive of Tesco, reportedly said: "There are still too many inside business and government who are unaware or unsure of the kind of impact they can have be reducing food loss and waste.”

According to the report, global losses from food waste total $940 billion each year; reducing food waste could see savings of as much as $14 for every $1 invested in waste prevention measures.

Earlier this year, the European Parliament's Environment Committee in Brussels voted in favour of new regulations urging European Union (EU) nations to reduce per capita food waste at the retail and consumer level by 30 per cent by 2025 and 50 per cent by 2030.

Reducing food waste could also help to limit agricultural emissions, which account for roughly 20 per cent of overall greenhouse gas emissions.

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