UK retailer Iceland has announced that it has reduced food waste in its operations by 23.2% over the past two years.
Initiatives implemented by the retailer resulted in cutting food waste by nearly 2,500 tonnes during this period.
In 2019/20, the retailer sold more than 1.3 million tonnes of food, and the surplus was donated to local communities, converted to animal feed, or transformed to energy through anaerobic digestion.
The retailer donated 157.8 tonnes of surplus food to the needy through a network of community partnerships.
These include collaborations with the charity, The Bread and Butter Thing, and social enterprise, Community Shop, to donate the equivalent of nearly 375,000 meals to some of the most deprived communities across the UK.
'Managing Food Surplus'
Peter Maddox, director of WRAP, said, "I am delighted by the progress Iceland has made to reduce its operational food waste so significantly over the last two years.
"As both a Courtauld 2025 signatory and an active participant in the UK Food Waste Reduction Roadmap, Iceland is also helping its customers cut waste in the home, and is an advocate of managing food surplus."
Iceland donated more than 60 freezers to food banks across the UK, enabling them to expand their support for those struggling to afford essentials.
It also sent unsold bread from its Welsh stores to Tiny Rebel Brewing Co. in Newport for manufacturing the award-winning Bread Board Pale Ale.
Reducing Food Waste Footprint
Managing Director of Iceland, Richard Walker, said, “Tackling food waste is high on our agenda as one of our many commitments to reduce our impact on the environment.
“We’ve worked with communities, colleagues and customers to make significant reductions and I am delighted that we have been able to make great strides in reducing our food waste footprint the past two years.”
The retailer has also announced that it will distribute surplus food, which would otherwise end up in dustbins, to employees at closing hours every day.