Nestlé links up with Company Shop to cut food waste

By Rick Pendrous

- Last updated on GMT

The surplus food distribution initiative has been tested at Nestlé’s factories
The surplus food distribution initiative has been tested at Nestlé’s factories

Related tags Food United kingdom

An innovative approach to minimising food waste has been developed by Nestlé UK and Ireland in partnership with Company Shop – the UK’s largest redistributor of surplus food – and supported by the Waste & Resources Action Programme.

The new approach aims to make sure that much more surplus food is redistributed and available for both charitable and commercial use.

The partners are undertaking detailed site assessments to identify any opportunity to reduce food waste at the source, and find ways that any part-processed products can be redistributed instead of being used for animal feed or anaerobic digestion.

Opportunity to reduce food waste

Finished, packed products are easier to redistribute and much of this surplus already goes to food redistribution charity FareShare.

Looking at foods that require more involved approaches to make redistribution possible means that redistribution organisations will now be able to access much more of Nestlé’s surplus.

The method has been tested at a number of Nestlé’s factories and has proved to be an economically sustainable way for food manufacturers to tackle operational food waste.

Increasing the amount of food being distributed in this way will also help the national redistribution infrastructure to grow and support the food industry’s efforts to reduce waste.

Charitable redistribution

Nestlé and Company Shop estimated that this approach would increase the levels of charitable redistribution from their UK operations by the equivalent of 2M meals a year on top of the products that already go to FareShare.

“By increasing the amount of food going through charitable redistribution, collectively we can make a significant impact and help people in need as well as reduce the environmental challenges associated with food waste,” ​said Andy Griffiths, head of environmental sustainability at Nestlé UK and Ireland.

Currently, only 17% of edible surplus food is redistributed through charitable or commercial routes.

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