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Waitrose survey reveals the most commonly wasted foods

Supermarket Waitrose has announced the results of a survey of the nation’s food waste habits to coincide with the launch of the Prince of Wales’ ‘Start’ initiative, which is designed to encourage people to live a more sustainable way of life.  

According to the survey, conducted by OnePoll, Brighton is the worst place in the country for food waste, with more than 16% of people disposing of food waste on a daily basis. Conversely, Chelmsford in Essex wastes the least food, with only 2% of people throwing away food every day.

The survey also detailed the types of foods which are most commonly thrown away, with bread coming out on top. Around 55.6% of people surveyed admitted to throwing bread away each week. Bananas and bagged salad also came high on this list, with 31.67% and 30.27% of people binning them each week respectively.

The other results of the survey are shown below:

ItemPercentage who throw away each week
Bread55.61
Bananas31.67
Bagged Salads30.27
Lettuce19.5
Cold Meats17.95
Apples17.78
Milk16.65
Yoghurt15.92
Cucumber15.38
Potatoes13.49

Waitrose will be giving advice on how food can be produced, bought, transported, stored, cooked and disposed of in a more environmentally friendly way through events, incentives and advice as part of ‘Start’.  

The supermarket has already implemented many policies to ensure food waste is reused and minimised, including sending food waste to anaerobic digestion. It also works with community food-network Fareshare, which distributes manufacturers’ and retailers’ surplus edible food to more than 29,000 vulnerable people each day, helping to reduce CO2 emissions by 13,950 tonnes in 2009. 

Last year Waitrose said it recycled more than half of its waste, diverting it away from landfill.

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