Finnish retailer K-Group has witnessed an increase in popularity for discounted products that are close to expiry and are offered at a reduced price.
K-Group has reduced food waste by 4% this year compared to the same period last year by implementing systematic waste management measures,
Interest in 'red-label' products is growing, with an increase of 5% compared to the corresponding survey in June, the retailer noted.
The survey also found that shoppers also take advantage of other offers when shopping for food, with 87% of respondents saying they follow offers and buy products on special offer.
K Group's sales data show that unit sales of 'red-label' products increased by almost 12% by the end of August compared to the same period last year.
The highest sales of these products in terms of unit sales are in bread, ready meals, meat products, yoghurts, puddings, and dairy products.
Food Waste Prevention At K-Group
K-Group retailer Juha Kupiainen, commented, "The most important thing is, of course, loss prevention. In ordering, we use supply planning and use various tools to continuously manage waste and selection.
"We run promotions on products that are close to their expiry date and, of course, we also red-flag products. We donate all the remaining edible food to food aid."
Products that help prevent food waste have also become popular on store shelves, the retailer noted.
For example, K-Citymarket Joensuu Pilko offers a Hyvis tomato and cheese soup made with waste tomatoes from the K-Group's central warehouse and surplus cheese from Juustoport.
The soup was launched in K-food stores in April and has already helped to reduce tomato waste from the central warehouse by around 7,000 kilograms.
Halve Food Waste By 2030
Halving food waste by 2030 is one of K-Group's key circular economy ambitions.
The new target was set in spring of 2022 and the retailer is working across the value chain to achieve it.
Timo Jäske, Kesko's vice president for responsibility in the grocery trade, said, "We are promoting the circular economy in line with our new responsibility strategy, and we are also guided by the revised Waste Act to reduce food waste.
"The amount of food waste in the K-Group has decreased by 4% this year compared to the same period last year. We also want to encourage our suppliers to minimise waste and help our customers to make responsible choices."
K-food store customers also see food waste reduction as an increasingly important part of the K-Group's responsibility work.
In an August survey, 58% of K-Group customers felt that the group should invest in reducing food waste in its sustainability activities.