We know that our customers expect the very best from us. As retailers we're expected to lead the way when it comes to matters of nutrition, sourcing and sustainability - and that's right. Right now, supply chain donation is a pioneering approach. Hopefully it won't be another twenty years before we see the industry following suit.
One of the biggest issues supermarkets must face up to is food waste... The fact is there are people up and down the country who are hungry, and could really use the food we throw away. And one day, we want all of that food - all 30,000 tonnes of it - to be turned into those 70million meals for the people who need it.
In a chestnutshell Festive Freeze aims to help households save money and stamp out the absurdity of food waste. But it is not just households that can benefit from the campaign. Across the UK the prize for cutting food waste is considerable as it is estimated that a concerted effort could prevent £30billion tonnes of food being wasted by 2025.
Up to 4.3 million tonnes of surplus food is produced each year, but only 2% of that goes to charities to feed the hungry. Around 3.7 million tonnes of this is destroyed or burned. While the political pressure simmers, an army of young activists are striving to tackle these issues from the front line. Chief amongst them is Grace Jones, a 15-year-old campaigner from Croydon.
They are the sort of statistics that leave you shaking your head in disbelief. The average UK family throws away the equivalent of 24 meals a month wasting £720 a year in the process. Overall Britons are chucking away 7 million tonnes of food and drink every year. This seems illogical when households are being heavily squeezed financially and need to look after every penny.
Growing up in a large family, my mother had very much a 'waste not, want not' attitude which has stuck with me to this day. This is prevalent in our 100% recycled Polarfleece range for little ones - mostly made from waste plastic bottles - thereby offsetting our plastics production and helping to reduce detrimental impacts on the environment.
1954; not only the year I landed on this planet, but also the year that food rationing in post war Britain finally ended. 60 years later (shhh... don't tell anyone) with the myriad of food related illness and problems that are in the news every day, I wonder whether we're any better off now than then?
'The Pig Idea' was started by food waste campaigner Tristram Stuart and Wahaca founder Thomasina Miers, both of whom I have a huge amount of respect for. However I have joined the debate as there are some issues in their argument which I feel need addressing on behalf of BPEX and the pig farming industry...