Cutting voedselafval can help the climate. Every day in the UK we waste 20m slices of bread, 280 tonnes of poultry, 4.4m potatoes and much more.
Households squander about 70% of the UK’s 9.5m tonnes of waste food every year. About a third of all the world’s food goes to waste, and producing, transporting and letting that food rot releases 8-10% of global greenhouse gases. If food waste were a country, it would have the third-biggest carbon footprint after the US and China, according to the UN’s Kos and Agriculture Organisation.
Food waste fell sharply last year during lockdown as people stuck at home began to use leftovers, plan meals and freeze food rather than throw it away. Once lockdown ended, egter, voedselafval rose again.
Growing, processing, packaging and transporting food all contribute to climate change. For example, about a third of fruit and veg is rejected for being the wrong size or shape before it even reaches the shops. And when food is thrown away, it rots and releases yet more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.