The Flawsome! Guide to Understanding Food Waste

Why is food waste a problem?

Well… there isn’t a single problem with food waste, there are many interlinking problems!   

Wasted Resources - When food goes to waste, it's not only the food that is wasted, we’re also wasting the valuable resources that go into creating food. Growing food uses energy, water and fertile soil, so by wasting food we are also wasting these things too. 

Large Scale Issue - The scale of food waste is staggering. How staggering? Let us tell you… Of all the food grown all over the world, approximately one third is wasted! When you think of food waste, you may think of the food you waste at home (it’s ok, we all waste a little bit), but food waste actually happens at every point in the supply-chain. It starts at the farm it’s grown on, carries through to food damaged during transport, continues with food neglected or unsold in stores, and ends with our own food waste at home. Food waste is a farm to table problem.   

Climate Change -  Food waste feeds climate change. The production of food (growing, harvesting, processing, packing and transporting) is carbon intensive, globally producing 3.3 billion metric tonnes of carbon dioxide, the greenhouse gas that stays in our atmosphere and heats it. When food goes to landfill it can’t degrade into soil and instead emits methane. Although methane doesn’t stay in our atmosphere as long as carbon dioxide does, it’s still bad news because it is 23 times more damaging than carbon dioxide. Yikes! 

Why we care about food waste and think you should too

Fighting food waste = fighting climate change.  

 Reducing food waste is one of the most effective solutions for mitigating climate change! You read that right! By reducing food waste, or better yet eliminating food waste altogether, we can cut back on greenhouse gas emissions and preserve natural resources, creating a healthier planet. Yay!

How can food waste be reduced?

Remember when we said there wasn’t a single problem with food waste, but many interlinking problems? Well, there is no one solution, but many interlinking solutions! 

 Systems Change - Food waste is a global issue (although it happens more frequently in the global north), so we need global solutions that address the deep rooted issues that lead to food waste. Currently, food is rejected for cosmetic reasons - wrong shape, size, colour. 

We need to reevaluate the idea of the ‘perfect’ looking produce and the perceived flaws of wonky fruits and veg, so that we view all food as good food, no matter what it looks like. Most farmers have contracts with big buyers and must deliver agreed quantities (of perfect looking fruits and veg) to avoid losing the contracts and, subsequently, their income. Combine the need to produce perfect looking fruit and veg with uncontrollable factors, like weather and pests, and in many cases you get a system that forces farmers to overproduce in order to make a stable income. 

To stop food waste it is fundamental to address the normalised overproduction of fruits and vegetables and instead create a more sustainable approach for managing food demand. To tackle these big system problems we need Government policy that prioritises measuring and reducing food waste at all levels of the supply-chain, alongside fairer practices that support farmers and business owners to reduce their food waste. 

Individual Change -  UK households waste the equivalent of eight meals a week. Every year this amounts to 6.5 million tonnes of food waste AND 4.5 million of it is deemed edible! Want to know how much waste that is? It’s enough to fill 38 million wheelie bins! To beat food waste we need everyone on board. Committing to small actions TOGETHER can add up to a BIG impact.

There are so many ways that we, as individuals, can commit to reducing food waste, including: 

Planning meals in advance  
Buying only what we need 
Getting creative with cooking 
Judging food on how it tastes rather than how it looks
Keeping the fridge turned to below 5c (it keeps produce fresher for longer!)


How does Flawsome! prevent food waste?

We envision a world where no food is wasted and people feel good about saving food, so we’ve reimagined waste and developed a solution that:    

  • Saves the rejected,  transforming imperfect and surplus fruit and veg into perfect cold-pressed juice  
  • Pays farmers fairly for their produce 
  •  Is better for the planet, from our logo to our packaging we are sustainable to our core 
  •  Makes zero compromises on quality and taste 

 

To date we have saved over 2 million wonky and surplus fruit and over the next 5 years we plan to save 20,000 tonnes of wonky and surplus produce!  Curious about our fruit saving drinks? 

Thank you for reading

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