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Europe looks to Scotland in fight against food waste
The household food thrown out by Scots each year would be enough to make 800 million meals - enough to feed everyone in Scotland three times a day for 50 days. Zero Waste Scotland is calling on Scots to act now and put an end to unnecessary food waste, which also costs households £1 billion a year.
The need to reduce this waste is being highlighted by a Europe-wide week of action (European Week for Waste Reduction, 19th - 27th November), with schools, universities, businesses, charities and community groups sharing their ideas for tackling food waste with their European neighbours.
This year, there is heightened interest in Scotland's approach after the Scottish Government announced a target to reduce all food waste in Scotland by 33% by 2025. As a result, several Scottish projects are 'twinning' with similar groups overseas to share learning, including link-ups between Food Sharing Edinburgh and Food Sharing Germany and between the University of Strathclyde and the University of Malta.
"In Scotland we are working jointly towards one of the most ambitious targets on food waste in Europe," says Ylva Haglund, food waste campaign manager, Zero Waste Scotland.
"Having local communities on board taking action to reduce waste at grassroots level is vital to achieving that, so it is fantastic to see so many organisations sharing Scotland's expertise at European level this week. We need to harness their learnings and enthusiasm to tackle food waste at all levels of society."
Each year 360,000 tonnes of avoidable food waste, that could have been eaten is binned in Scottish homes. Award-winning chef Neil Forbes, chef director at Edinburgh's Cafe St Honore has devised a series of simple, quick recipes using some of Scotland's most commonly wasted food. The recipes for these can be found on Zero Waste Scotland's Love Food Hate Waste website and include short, easy to follow videos. Of course, you don't have to be a Scot to try them out!
"Reducing food waste is one of Zero Waste Scotland's top priorities and we welcome the Scottish Government's ambition in setting a stretching target for this," adds Ylva Haglund.
"Action is needed at all levels of society so it is great to see such a wide range of initiatives taking place all over Scotland for European Week for Waste Reduction. Often people just don't realise how much food we all waste, so learning about the simple steps they can take to reduce waste through our Love Food Hate Waste website really does help to make sure food means meals and not waste."
Neil Forbes, ambassador chef for the Love Food Hate Waste campaign says: "As a chef and restaurant owner I'm very conscious of avoiding food waste, so I was amazed to discover how much food we as a country throw out. European Week for Waste Reduction is a great opportunity for people to play their own part in reducing waste, and I hope by showing people how they can use up food in tasty and easy recipes people will be encouraged to really make the most of the food they buy."
Zero Waste Scotland exists to create a society where resources are valued and nothing is wasted. Its goal is to help Scotland realise the economic, environmental and social benefits of making best use of the world's limited natural resources.
24th November 2016