Tesco & suppliers cut 200,000 tonnes of food waste from operations

Tesco has worked in partnership with its suppliers to cut 200,000 tonnes of food waste from their combined operations, the supermarket will reveal today. This comes as Tesco published its own food waste data for the eighth year and challenges other retailers and food companies to do the same.

Tesco has reached this important milestone by working closely with 71 of its largest suppliers around the world, all of whom are also making their food waste data public today. Tesco helped its own-label suppliers to cut 125,000 tonnes of food waste over three years and worked in partnership with 11 of the world’s biggest household brands – including Coca-Cola, Kellogg’s, Nestlé and Unilever – as they cut a further 30,000 tonnes from their operations.

The supermarket will also announce that it has cut 45,000 tonnes from its global operations since it began reporting and has now exceeded the United Nation’s SDG 12.3 goal of halving food waste by 2030 in its Central European operation by cutting 58% of its food waste intensity.

The combined effects of climate change and Covid-19 have made tackling food waste more urgent than ever, according to Tesco and members of global coalition, Champions 12.3. The coalition will warn that food waste accounts for 8% of all global greenhouse gas emissions and that unless we act now, we will fatally undermine our ability to tackle the climate emergency. Meanwhile, COVID-19 has exposed weaknesses in the global food system, driving up food waste, impacting farmer incomes and increasing the number of people who go to bed hungry.

Tesco CEO, and Chair of Champions 12.3, Dave Lewis said, “One third of the world’s food is going to waste, while one in nine people go hungry. If food loss and waste were a country, it would be the third largest emitter of greenhouse gases on the planet. In order to halve global food waste by 2030, more must be done with more urgency than ever before.

Significant progress is being made. The UK has cut its food waste by 27% since 2007 and hundreds of companies, including many of our own suppliers, are doing their part too. But there is still more to do. We need even more companies to set food waste reduction targets and publish their data.”

“We are also asking the UK government, and its counterparts around the world, to embed food loss and waste reduction into post-Covid plans to bolster supply chains, as well as strategies to meet commitments to the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.”