In a new online survey, Bracknell Forest, Reading and Wokingham residents are being asked what would help them to waste less food.
re3 – the central Berkshire waste management partnership – wants to help residents reduce their food waste. By binning food that could have been eaten, people pay for it twice, from their grocery bill and as council tax payers for its disposal.
Recent research from re3 showed that an estimated 22,836 tonnes of food waste is thrown away a year from houses across the whole of the re3 area of Bracknell Forest, Reading and Wokingham.
Love Food Hate Waste has found that food waste costs the average household in the UK £470 a year. Using this calculation, re3 area householders are throwing away up to an estimated £85m worth of food a year, and at a cost of over £2.4m from their council tax payments to process it. This is at a time when all councils have to make difficult choices to make budget savings.
The quick and simple survey will be used to gauge what type of food is being wasted and why, and what residents feel would help them in making sure that they make the most from their food.
The survey can be found here and is open to residents in the Bracknell Forest, Reading and Wokingham council areas. Respondents can choose to remain anonymous, but by providing their name and email address, they will be entered into a free prize draw to win a Tefal Prelude toaster.
Bracknell Forest’s Executive Member for Environment and Chairman of the Joint Waste Disposal Board, Cllr Mrs Dorothy Hayes MBE said: “We know that it’s easy to waste food, we all do it from time to time despite our best intentions. However, it all adds up when you consider that re3 encompasses three local authority areas and 182,000 households. We want to support residents in wasting less of their food. Through this survey, we’ll be able to understand better what people waste and why, and what we can do to help them.”
Reading Borough Council’s Lead Councillor for Neighbourhoods, Cllr Liz Terry said: “This survey is important because it will help us to gauge what types of food are being wasted and in what circumstances. We want to deal with the food waste issue at its source as by the time food is binned, it has been bought and paid for and then incurs a cost for its disposal. re3 can help with training, information and advice, and we want to know from residents what other assistance is needed to support them in wasting less food.”
Wokingham Borough Council’s Executive Member for Environment Cllr Angus Ross said: “The food waste reduction survey has been designed to be quick and easy to fill out, but at the same time will provide us with useful data that can help re3 to shape future communications campaigns. We feel that there may be a gap between the amount of food that residents think they bin and what is actually collected in kerbside waste, so we want to identify how best we help residents match their purchases with what they can eat more effectively.”
re3 recently announced a series of Love Food Hate Waste training sessions across the three council areas to educate residents on food waste reduction and support them in passing the message on to family, friends and their wider communities. re3 also posts regular waste reduction tips and advice on social media. Find us @re3 recycling on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.Back