Food waste survey reveals one third of all items bought are thrown in the bin

Published: 5 Dec 2013

We are a bunch of wasters when it comes to food, with two thirds of people admitting to chucking out of date produce. 
Despite most families counting the pennies more than ever, new research shows plenty of grub is going to waste. 
An Environmental Protection Agency survey suggests the majority of food that goes in the bin never even made it out of the packet - let alone in to the oven. 
The study was carried out for the STOP Food Waste group and it also revealed that more than half of people map-out their spending by making shopping lists. 
Despite this, hundreds of millions of euro worth of food is discarded in this country every year. 
STOP Food Waste revealed: 
- One third of all food bought is thrown out. 
- The main wastes are potatos, bread, apples, meat and fish. 
- Half of all salads bought are thrown out. 
- One third of all bread purchased is binned. 
- A quarter of all fruit bought is discarded. 
A new RTE One documentary will look at how one rural town fared when it tried to reduce its food waste. 
Waste Watchers, which will be presented by Philip Boucher Hayes, focuses on the people of Killorglin, Co Kerry who tried to cut-out ditching grub. 
The show reveals most people in the town thought they were very careful about not discarding food. 
But after measuring their waste, most of the town's inhabitants were surprised at how much tucker they were actually chucking out. 
Spokeswoman for Stop Food Waste, Odile Le Bolloch, said people often end up coming home from shopping trips with more than they anticipated. 
She explained: "Shops want us to buy lots of stuff and use a variety of psychological tricks to tempt us. 
"Even if we go with great intentions we often end up coming out with food we won't use and it ends up in the bin. 
"Simple things like making a list and not shopping when you're hungry can help us buy only what we need. 
"If you have over purchased and end up with food in your fridge that you're just not going to get around to eating, all is not lost, there's always the freezer where the typical foods that we waste such as bread, meat, fish can be safely stored for later use. 
"Also understanding some of the key ways where shops tempt us through design and product placement you will be ready to resist them and go home with just the food you need and without those extra things that eat into your budget and often become waste. 
"There are the additional associated costs of food waste such as the cost to go shopping for food, and the energy used for storage and preparation." 
Courtesy of the Irish Mirror: http://www.irishmirror.ie/news/irish-news/health-news/food-waste-survey-reveals-one-2879383

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