Towns and cities wishing to join the fight against household food waste are being invited to apply for funding to put their plans into action.
Sainsbury’s recently announced its commitment to continue the Waste less, Save more campaign after its success in pioneer town Swadlincote. A pot of £1 million is available for investment in UK communities that are committed to tackling the issue of food waste.
More than 110 towns and cities across the UK, from Dundee to Truro, have already signed up as Discovery Communities. Others interested in getting involved should email email@example.com for more information.
Those registered will be sent an Inspiration Guide on or around 23 January, which will also be available to download from this website.
The how-to guide is packed with ideas – from community events to technological innovations that can help households reduce food waste. These will include inspiration for free or low-cost solutions- based on what has worked well in Swadlincote.
Communities will be able to pick and choose their options and apply for funding from the central pot, while those with new ideas can pitch those to a Dragons’ Den- style Waste less, Save more panel.
The first deadline for applying for funds is 24 February, while 31 March is the second and final deadline for applications.
Launched in late 2015 and trialled in Swadlincote throughout 2016, Waste less, Save more is a five-year plan to help customers throw less food in the bin and save money on shopping bills.
UK households waste around seven million tonnes of food each year, costing families an estimated £12.5 billion - or an average of around £700 per household.
Over the past year, Swadlincote households have been trialling innovative tools, such as free food-sharing app Olio and smart fridges which send ‘selfies’ to your smartphone to help avoid doubling up on produce.
A team of Food Saver Champions, recruited by South Derbyshire District Council, has also been visiting homes and local businesses with advice and tips for cutting down on food waste.
Successful initiatives, including the Fab Food programme which has seen local schools get involved in reducing food waste, will be considered for roll-out nationwide in the months and years ahead.
Leaders of more than 30 participating communities attended an event in Birmingham to hear about the new pot of funding and plans for the year ahead.
Speaking at the event, Paul Crewe, Head of Sustainability, Engineering, Energy and Environment for Sainsbury’s, said: “This marks a significant milestone in our Waste less, Save more programme as we move from focusing our efforts on a trial town to sharing our learnings with communities up and down the UK.
“With well over 100 communities already signing up, the response so far has been overwhelming and really highlights that the nation is waking up to food waste. Not only will a reduction have a huge environmental impact but, with families throwing away £700 a year on uneaten food, it will help put more money back in the pocket of British people, too.”
Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about Discovery Communities and how to get involved.
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