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UK Co-Op To Sell Food Past 'Best Before' In Bid To Reduce Waste

Published on Dec 6 2017 11:40 AM in Fresh Produce tagged: UK Retail / food waste / East of England Co-op / Best Before

UK Co-Op To Sell Food Past 'Best Before' In Bid To Reduce Waste

The East of England Co-op has announced plans to sell products beyond their best-before dates, with the aim of reducing food waste in its stores.

The retailer's 125 stores in East Anglia will now sell products that have passed this date at the highly discounted price of 10p.

The group says that this move follows a successful three-month trial in 14 of its stores, and it anticipates that the initiative will save two metric tonnes of food from being wasted each year.

“We are committed to reducing waste in our business,” said Roger Grosvenor, joint chief executive of the East of England Co-op and head of the company's retail division.

“This is not a money-making exercise, but a sensible move to reduce food waste and keep edible food in the food chain. By selling perfectly edible food, we can save 50,000 items every year, which would otherwise have gone to waste.”

Waste Reduction

The East of England Co-op says that the majority of products that use best-before dates will be included in this scheme, such as tinned goods, packets, and dried food. These goods will remain on sale for up to one month past this date.

“During our trial, we found our 10p items went within hours of being reduced – sometimes quicker,” added Grosvenor.

“The vast majority of our customers understand they are fine to eat and appreciate the opportunity to make a significant saving on some of their favourite products,” he continued.

The initiative will not include products with a use-by date, as these may be unsafe to consume, however, the retailer has introduced a new reduced-to-clear policy, which will offer significant discounts on these products early in the day, to further help reduce waste.

© 2017 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Sarah Harford. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.

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