Did you know that in the UK 15m tonnes of food is lost or wasted each year with consumers throwing away 4.2m tonnes of perfectly edible food?
If the food produced but not eaten were a country, it is estimated that its carbon footprint would make it the third biggest emitter of greenhouse gases, behind the US and China.
These statistics show just how much wastage there is in the UK alone. So why do we waste so much food, and what can we do to improve the situation?
The wastage of food happens all along the supply chain, right up to the consumers’ plates. It happens for a huge number of reasons such as bananas falling of a truck, supermarkets throwing food out that is nearing its sell by date or consumers binning food they consider inedible. Some of this waste is inevitable, but a lot is easily avoidable.
The fact is that almost a quarter of all bread is thrown away. This is largely due to the relatively short shelf life that bread has. Shops are unable to sell ‘fresh’ bread that has been on the shelf for more than a day. Consumers often throw bread away when it has merely gone a bit stale, not realising they can freeze it to help it last longer or even toast stale bread.
Not just a local problem
In countries where poor infrastructure means it is difficult to deliver food quickly, preservatives and longer shelf life taken on a new importance. If it takes longer for manufacturers to get bread onto shop shelves, then it is more likely that it will be binned before it is consumed.
We can all help
Everyone can do their bit to help with the reduction of food waste. From farmers and manufacturers to retailers and consumers, if everyone does their part to reduce wastage then the situation can change. In fact, in the UK between 2007 & 2012 the amount of food waste produced actually fell by 21% meaning things are beginning to change. However, the figures show we still have a long way to go.
The TasteTech Solution
Here at TasteTech, we take the issue of food waste incredibly seriously and through our unique encapsulation technology we are continually developing innovative new products that can help to extend product shelf-life and in turn help reduce the amount of food being wasted worldwide.
One such product is SorbicPlus which is an encapsulated preservative designed to help keep bread mould free for up to 30 days. This can be especially important to bakery manufacturers who find themselves under pressure to extend the life of their bread in often difficult conditions. SorbicPlus can also be used in a range of other yeasted applications such as bagels, rolls, premixes and flatbreads.
Lynne Sinton, Product Manager for Bakery and Sports Nutrition comments – “We know food waste is a real concern to the bakery industry so we are pleased that we can help provide a solution to the issue of short-term shelf-life for yeasted products”. Lynne continues “SorbicPlus is giving bakery manufacturers significant improvements in both shelf-life and product quality, whilst helping to reduce costs and we welcome the opportunity to work with bakery manufacturers globally in helping address the issue of food waste”.
For further information on Sorbic Plus click here.