Supermarket chain ups its efforts to reduce food waste

Stephen Gadd
April 25th, 2017

This article is more than 6 years old.

Despite efforts to reduce it, the amount of food thrown away by supermarkets is still unacceptably high

In future, there should be more for us and less for the pigs (photo: flickr/US Environment Protection Agency)

Dansk Supermarked, the concern which owns supermarket chains Netto, Føtex and Bilka, has admitted to throwing away 33,400 tonnes of food last year.

It is mostly perishables such as fruit, vegetables and bread which ended up being thrown out and these items comprise almost 70 percent of the total amount of wasted food.

Mads Hvitved Grand, the head of communications at Dansk Supermarked, told DR Nyheder that “out of all the food we buy in to Netto, Føtex and Bilka during the year, 2.5 percent is thrown out. It is, at least, a relatively small proportion that is not sold, but 33,400 tons is still a lot of wasted food, and we are not at all happy about it.”

Grand did point out that the food was not completely wasted, but converted either to animal fodder or biomass. “We would, however, much rather see it eaten,” he said.

READ ALSO: Netto weighs in to cut food waste

Some progress, but not enough
The chain has made some progress. From 2015-2016, it has reduced the percentage of wasted food by 5.2 percent, but more should be done, Grand says.

“It’s going to be something of a challenge and we need new ideas, new processes and probably also new technology. That’s why we’re involving all our employees and at the same time, stepping up the dialogue with our customers, suppliers and the organisations which are fighting food waste. The problem has to be solved collectively,” Grand pointed out.

Consumers like the idea
The idea is to reduce food waste by 50 percent before 2030, which is in line with the UN’s sustainability guidelines.

And it seems as if the campaign has the backing of consumers. A new survey carried out by the Danish Agriculture and Food Council shows that 44 percent of Danes would like to be better at reducing food waste in order to do something about man-made climate change.


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