Michael Gove has appointed a food waste tsar to end the ‘moral scandal’ of Britain’s throwaway culture. The Environment Secretary has appointed businessman Ben Elliot with responsibility for tackling discarded produce. This picture making reference to Burscough firms is shown in the report.
Unpaid, Mr Elliot will attempt to slash the 10.2million tons of food needlessly thrown away by households and businesses each year. The announcement is particularly timely, coming just after Christmas, when many families find themselves throwing out food having bought too much for the festive period.
Around 43,000 tons of surplus food from retailers and manufacturers is already redistributed every year, according to Whitehall figures. However, the equivalent of 250million meals a year is still estimated to go uneaten. Food waste is likely to be particularly high over the festive period. Figures from the charity Wrap suggest Britons binned as many as 3.5million mince pies and 7.1million pigs in blankets last year.
The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs estimates that 10.2million tons of food is wasted every year. Of this, 1.8million tons comes from food manufacturers, another million from the hospitality sector, and 260,000 from retailers.
The remainder, more than 7million tons, comes from households. The appointment of a ‘food surplus and waste champion’ is part of the Government’s Resources and Waste Strategy. Ministers aim to end the practice of sending food waste to landfill by 2030.