I see the British government is the latest to jump aboard this particular bandwagon:
The level of household food waste in England is “unacceptable” and householders have a key role to play in reducing it, MPs have said.
As others have said: who is working for whom, here?
The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee said 7.3m tonnes of food was wasted in UK households in 2015.
The committee said shops should relax standards that prevent the sale of “wonky vegetables” to help cut waste.
Vegetables that shops currently cannot sell is now classed as household food waste, is it? This is three paragraphs in.
Committee chairman Neil Parish said: “One-third of food produced for human consumption is lost or wasted globally, and in the UK over £10bn worth of food is thrown away by households every year.
You know, perhaps the people throwing away this stuff are in a better position to judge than some bureaucrat in London?
“Economically, food waste costs households hundreds of pounds a year and causes increased disposal costs to local authorities, pushing up council tax bills.
Oh, so that’s what is pushing up council tax bills: people throwing away too much perfectly edible food. Right.
Food waste costs the average person in the UK £200 per year, the report said.
The average household lost £470 a year because of avoidable food waste, while those with children lost £700, it said.
Okay, but a couple of paragraphs before we were told that:
“Socially, it is a scandal that people are going hungry and using food banks when so much produce is being wasted.
People are supposedly so cavalier about food that they throwing it away to the tune of £200 per year, yet they are also hungry and going to food banks. Yes, I get that we might not be talking about the same people, but it sounds more like Marie Antoinette’s vision of society rather than modern Britain.
It said it would be “hugely challenging” to reduce food waste further and would require “a considerable investment of resource”.
“Give us more money,” they said.
And isn’t this lovely:
In their report, Food Waste in England, the MPs said:
The incoming government should establish a national food waste target for England.
It should examine how lessons on food and avoiding waste could be incorporated into the curriculum.
Waste reduction body Wrap, a charity which helps people and businesses reduce waste, should have sufficient money from the government to maintain its efforts in raising awareness.
Food businesses and retailers over a certain size should be forced to separate food waste for collection.
Supermarkets should be required by the government to publish data on the amount of food they bin. The report commended Tesco for already doing so and Sainsbury’s for moving in the same direction.
Retailers should increase the amount of surplus food they give away to charities.
Retailers should improve their packaging by, for example, increasing resealable packets.
Retailers should make food storage instructions clearer on packaging.
The next government should work with restaurants on reducing waste by, for example, offering smaller portions, reducing the amount of sides, and encouraging the taking home of leftovers.
Anyone who thinks that Britain will be free of meddling, petty bureaucrats seeking to line regulate every tiny aspect of life while lining their own pockets once they leave the EU is seriously deluded. Yes, I get the argument that “we can at least kick them out”, but let’s see this actually happen for once.
That a government department can put out stuff like this in a run-up to a general election speaks volumes. What it means is that most people either agree with this stuff (spend five minutes on Mumsnet to see who) or they don’t care. Either way, people deserve the government they get. If this is what they want then good luck to them, but wasn’t the plan for Britain, once Brexit is complete, to become some sort of commercial paradise free of all that red tape and crushing regulation? Uh-huh.