Educate customers on food waste, Tesco says

News Shopper: Educate customers on food waste, Tesco says Educate customers on food waste, Tesco says

FUSSY customers who reject misshapen fruit and vegetables need to be educated about food waste, Tesco has told MPs.

The supermarket said "wonky" produce often ends up in the bin, despite it being fine to eat, because customers will only take the "cream of the crop".

Matt Simister, food sourcing director at Tesco, told the House of Lords European Union sub-committee on agriculture that it was looking at options to salvage the unwanted vegetables, including putting it into its value range and into food service.

But he said customers needed to be educated about waste and fresh food.

"Customers naturally select, they always pick the cream of crop first and the rest of it then gets left," he said.

"Then the new deliveries come in and you have the new cream of the crop - with the old, ugly, misshapen, left and it goes to waste.

"Customers will always make the choice of the one that looks cosmetically better. That's a very difficult reality to us."

He compared UK shopping habits to those in eastern Europe where shoppers are happy to buy produce which is not "cosmetically" pleasing.

EU rules on misshapen fruit and vegetables were relaxed in 2009 but supermarkets still maintain their own product standards.

Representatives from Tesco, Waitrose and the waste industry have been giving evidence to the inquiry into food waste prevention.

Earlier this year Tesco announced it was dropping some food promotions after finding that two-thirds of produce grown for bagged salad is wasted.

It published food waste figures for its operations for the first time, revealing that 68 per cent of salad to be sold in bags is thrown out - 35 per cent of it in the home.

As a result of the findings, it said it would end multi-buys on large bags of salad and is developing mix-and-match promotions for smaller bags in a bid to help customers reduce the amount they are wasting.

It has also moved to a "one date" system to stop customer confusion between display dates and use-by dates.

How much food do you throw away every week? Have your say below.

Comments (6)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

9:20am Wed 11 Dec 13

joertmclark says...

Supermarkets should educate themselves on food waste. Instead of insisting on "Buy One Get One Free" offers which is a common cause of food waste; they should replace "Buy One Get One Free" offers with "Half Price" offers. This will then allow the consumer to choose whether they need to buy the one item or two and still benefit from the promotion either way.
Supermarkets should educate themselves on food waste. Instead of insisting on "Buy One Get One Free" offers which is a common cause of food waste; they should replace "Buy One Get One Free" offers with "Half Price" offers. This will then allow the consumer to choose whether they need to buy the one item or two and still benefit from the promotion either way. joertmclark

11:01am Wed 11 Dec 13

snoop dogg says...

That's exactly what it says in the article that Tesco are planning to do:-

"As a result of the findings, it said it would end multi-buys on large bags of salad and is developing mix-and-match promotions for smaller bags in a bid to help customers reduce the amount they are wasting."
That's exactly what it says in the article that Tesco are planning to do:- "As a result of the findings, it said it would end multi-buys on large bags of salad and is developing mix-and-match promotions for smaller bags in a bid to help customers reduce the amount they are wasting." snoop dogg

3:27am Thu 12 Dec 13

sarfflondonbird says...

Could help customers more by actually reducing prices altogether. Then some on the product they can't shift. Bet it would soon go then. At today's prices and the fact that people are having to find more money to keep their roofs over their heads, a lot of people are having to do without decent meals. High supermarket priced food doesn't help, and its even worse that so much gets binned daily.
Could help customers more by actually reducing prices altogether. Then some on the product they can't shift. Bet it would soon go then. At today's prices and the fact that people are having to find more money to keep their roofs over their heads, a lot of people are having to do without decent meals. High supermarket priced food doesn't help, and its even worse that so much gets binned daily. sarfflondonbird

7:57am Thu 12 Dec 13

right-writes says...

I wonder how much an advert like this costs Tesco?
I wonder how much an advert like this costs Tesco? right-writes

1:02pm Thu 12 Dec 13

Locked an Loaded says...

gypo joe has been eating "ugly" fruit an veg all his life - you are what you eat they say!!!! yeeeeeeehaaaarrrrr :p
gypo joe has been eating "ugly" fruit an veg all his life - you are what you eat they say!!!! yeeeeeeehaaaarrrrr :p Locked an Loaded

10:06am Fri 13 Dec 13

rescoffering says...

...rofl!! lurve it 'l and l'
...rofl!! lurve it 'l and l' rescoffering

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree