Food and drink manufacturers 'making progress' on landfill reduction
Food and drink manufacturers are making good progress towards meeting their zero waste to landfill goal by 2015, according to a new trade survey.
The new survey from the Food and Drink Federation (FDF) was published today (27 February) and is entitled Food and Drink Federation Members' Waste Survey. It showed that food and drink manufacturers sent 3% of their food and packaging waste to landfill in 2012, compared to 16.5% in 2006.
The report, published jointly with WRAP, reveals the significant waste management improvements manufacturers are making year on year. In 2006 16.5% of food and packaging waste was sent to landfill and this was reduced to 12.5% in 2008 and to 9% in 2009.
In 2012, manufacturers prevented 250,000 tonnes of food from entering the waste stream by redistributing it to other uses, notably to animal feed. Recycling showed a significant increase with 28% of all waste managed in this way, increasing to 96% for used packaging alone.
The FDF said that these results also demonstrate that food and drink manufacturers are delivering "real progress" towards achieving FDF's zero food and packaging waste to landfill target by 2015 - one of the key commitments of FDF's Five-fold Environmental Ambition. In fact, these results show that the vast majority of members have already achieved the zero target.
The FDF asserted that manufacturers can build on this progress, by taking action to reduce the amount of food, drink and packaging waste, and reap the associated environmental and financial benefits.
FDF Sustainability director Andrew Kuyk explained: "Tackling food waste is a key priority for our industry, both to make what we have go further but to also help conserve the natural resources on which future production depends. These latest findings highlight that FDF members are close to achieving our zero food and packaging waste target by ingraining good environmental practices to deliver a more resilient and resource efficient supply chain.
"Working in partnership with independent bodies such as WRAP and our partners across the supply chain, the industry has been able to ensure significant progress to reach these targets, enabling manufacturers to waste less or use any that is generated in a more environmentally friendly way."
WRAP Food and Drink head Andy Dawe added: "We are delighted to see these latest results which show good progress from the industry. With waste to landfill now so low, businesses should grasp the opportunity to focus on the greater financial savings achievable through focussing on waste prevention.
"WRAP is happy to support businesses, and the supply chain as a whole, to identify where waste is arising and enable them to find the solutions to prevent such waste, making large financial and environmental savings."