Combatting food waste with Love Essex 

Love Essex are on a mission to inspire residents to reduce their waste and to reuse, repair and recycle as much as possible. Cathryn Wood, Senior Circular Economy Officer has outlined how her team are combatting food waste.  

Why is food waste a big deal? 

Food waste isn’t only a waste of money, water and energy, but it’s also contributing to climate change. In fact, 36 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions could be prevented by saving food from bins in UK homes! 

How did you start combatting food waste?  

Back in May, we set up an online community to host a two-week research session to understand what resident’s attitudes were towards food waste in Essex. 

We followed a select group of residents to see how much food they wasted, or how they avoided food waste, and any fun ways they had to repurpose food that would otherwise go to waste.   

Photo supplied by a resident taking part in our research. Preparing meals in batches is one way to combat food waste!

Then, using this research, we created a campaign to help others avoid wasting food - you may have noticed our food waste campaign artwork out in the wild already in local magazines and supermarkets! 

You can read the Food Waste Research Report to find out more about what we learnt. 

What’s next for Love Essex’s food waste campaign? 

A huge amount of money is being wasted – the average Essex household wastes £60 a month (that’s £720 a year) by throwing away food that could have been eaten.  

From January, we will be encouraging residents to pledge to reduce their food waste and each month we will host challenges and competitions, alongside providing useful tips and advice. For those who take part in our food waste challenge, we will have £60 worth of supermarket vouchers up for grabs every month in 2023.  

For some handy hints and tips to start reducing your food waste, check out Love Essex, Love Food 

Who is Kitche? 

Now, we have partnered with Kitche to help Essex start saving food and money today; download the Kitche app here. We’re hoping this helpful tool will make it easy for people to transition towards thinking differently about the food they would otherwise waste.

Image supplied by Kitche. Vegetables drawn in a child-like cartoon style holding up a sign saying 'fighting food waste together'.

Kitche is a free app designed to save you money and start combatting food waste at home. The app allows you to scan receipts to track the food you have bought and produces handy shopping lists and clever recipe tips adapted to what you already have in your kitchen.  

What else can you share with readers about Love Essex? 

Love Essex, Love Food is our latest campaign, previous campaigns have tackled specific environmental problems including: home-composting, cloth nappies, reusable period products, the Love Essex Fund and our volunteer scheme Love Essex Champions.  

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