In the UK there is now an enormous amount of food wasted. One has to ask why is this? We are in tough economic times. We have concerns about food production (and pressure to move to GM crops to increase yield), as well as social difficulties feeding people (resulting in widespread UK Foodbank introduction) – apart from a food supply crisis in the world which leaves many millions of people including children starving.
What is anybody doing about it? Short answer NOTHING! Ten million tonnes of food wasted each year and we simply carry on regardless. Sickening. Some say there has been food waste for a hundred years or more, which is possibly true, but nothing on this scale.
OK the government pays lip service to the need to solve the problem – and then takes totally ineffective action.
The food producers and the supermarkets should be in the dock, as well as the food industry.
In past times people were responsible and looked after their food, both in what they bought and how they preserved it (despite no freezers or fridges); they shopped regularly (even daily) to buy what they were going to use, leftovers were used up (nothing was wasted). Now the biggest food waste comes from domestic households.
Nowadays, people throw food away because they are frightened & confused by silly sell-by dates, use by dates, best before dates etc. For example you have tinned food which will keep for fifty years, but now has a date stamped on it that gets it thrown away. Similarly with dried food. Also, producers love to sell their stuff in increasingly large so called ‘value’ packages and the gullible public buy these and then end up throwing half of it away. Then there is the disgraceful multi-buy scenarios which get people to buy food they don’t need or want and can’t use – so it gets ditched in the end. Furthermore there is the supermarkets at the end of their day clearing their shelves of still very edible supposedly ‘out of date’ food and throwing it into the skip – so off to landfill and creating further environmental damage (for example producing damaging methane gas as well as producing toxins and water pollution).
We are not the only land creating the problem – developed countries are the offenders and the USA particularly bad
Is there anything to be done? OF COURSE!
We need the UK government to act and bring in effective legislation. Stop the oversupply of food, which is the root of the problem (rationing is the answer). Halt the supermarkets in their tracks – no more ‘out of town’ shopping centres (get food supply back to a local level and into our towns & high streets). Restrict the amount of food that they are allowed to hold (particularly perishable foods). No more multi-buys (for example no more 2 for 1 BOGOF’s – let them halve the price instead). Limit the amount of money that customers can pay for food (say £5 per family member per day – get them shopping more often.) Punishment for the management for the food thrown away (torture would be best but we don’t allow that unfortunately!).
It is no good trying to educate the consumer and telling them not to waste food – they won’t listen and don’t care. Only punishment will work (as torture is out then it has to be other penalties – financial, public denigration, refusal to collect their rubbish, cancel benefits, suspend pensions, double Council tax etc)
Well will anything be done? Don’t be daft. The politicians are a self centred selfish cowardly lot, so NOTHING will be done here (or USA and other places). We will carry on destroying our Country and our planet and so we will leave nothing for our descendents. Well done everybody.