We're in Horecava

Published: 7 Jan 2019

We're in Horecava

Fresh Pod are now in Horecava and are excited to meet the Dutch! Cleans air of ethylene for fresh produce commercial & domestic storage. Safe, natural, inexpensive & effective. Our products prolong freshness & reduce waste.  
We are here with our friends and team mates Black Shuck, Bullards Spirits, Essence Foods, Fresh Pac, Giffords, Great British Cake Company, James White Drinks, Naylor Farms, Quickfill, Sisserou, Steward and Guild, Stoke Sauces, Taste of Suffolk and Yare Valley Oils.  
If you are about, come find us at RAI Amsterdam, Horecava, Europaplein 24, 1078 GZ, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. East Stand 07.420 from Monday 07/01/2019 to Thursday 10/01/2019.  
We're so excited and can't wait to start exploring! Bring on the Dutch!

Further Information

For further information, please visit https://twitter.com/FreshPodUK

Plan for food waste to be separated

Published: 7 Jan 2019

Plan for food waste to be separated

Ministers are backing the idea, but will offer it for consultation before any changes happen. 
The scheme would reduce greenhouse gases from landfill, but could lead to less frequent collections of general household waste. 
Some councils will oppose the policy unless they are given extra funds to carry out the scheme. 
At the moment, only around 35% of households in England are obliged to put food waste in its own caddy. 
That compares with 56% in Scotland and 100% in Wales. The figures exclude food waste mixed with garden waste. 
While the new rule would force councils to offer separate food caddies, people would not be obliged to use them. 
Why do we need food caddies? 
Unwanted food that goes into a general bin rots in landfill and creates methane - a powerful greenhouse gas. 
When waste food is collected separately, it can be put into an anaerobic digester - a tank in which the food breaks down into sludge, carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane, which can be used for generating energy or running a vehicle. 
The residual sludge is used as a soil fertiliser. 
The change will help the government reach its targets on cutting greenhouse gas emissions. 
Some local councils say there's a long-term bonus from having food waste separated and collecting it every week. 
Because when rotting food is safely in the caddy, general waste collections can be reduced to every two or more weeks without providing a feast for flies. 
What are the drawbacks? 
The policy has been controversial for people wanting bins emptied every week. Some councils say the scheme is too expensive. 
It creates a problem with disposing of nappies and the food waste caddies create extra clutter for front gardens or streets. 
But the plan does fit with the government strategy of changing our relationship with the stuff we throw away. 
Recyclenow, the government-backed campaign, says: "Throwing away food is a huge waste of the energy, water and packaging used in its production, transportation and storage. 
"If we all stopped wasting the food which could have been eaten, it would have the same CO2 impact as taking one in four cars off UK roads." 
Courtesy of BBC News

Further Information

For further information, please visit https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-46571391

Free food waste collection for every household in England

Published: 7 Jan 2019

Free food waste collection for every household in England

Weekly collections of food waste will be made from every household in England as part of a major government strategy to deal with the rubbish crisis.  
At the moment only about a third of local authorities collect food waste separately- while UK households throw away about 7 millions of food a year- most of which is edible.  
In a wide-ranging overhaul of the waste strategy, businesses will be forced to pay the full cost of recycling or disposing of their packaging waste- compared to just 10 per cent of the cost at the moment and they will also be required to take more responsibility for items that are difficult or expensive to recycle such are cars, electrical goods and batteries.  
Futhermore, recycling rules- which vary considerably from one local authority to another- will be made consistent- while a bottle deposit scheme is planned to begin in 2023 to  
increase recycling rates.  
Further and Faster 
"We will go further and faster, to reduce, reuse and recycle. Together we can move away from being a 'throw-away' society, to one that looks at waste as a valuable resource," said Environment Secretary Michael Gove. 
The announcements were broadly welcomed by campaign groups although they said they didn't go far enough in some cases.  
"The plans to ensure that companies who create and sell plastic packaging will at last pay for dealing with the consequences are really encouraging," said Greenpeace UK senior oceans campaigner Louise Edge.  
"This should be a big help in getting difficult to recycle and expensive plastic packaging off our supermarket shelves, driving better product design and much needed investment in refillable and reusable packaging," she added.  
'Too slow'  
However, these proposals only enter law in 2023 and there's no reason why it couldn't happen much sooner, she said. Friends of the Earth waste campaigner Julian Kirby added: "At long last the government appears to be getting serious about tackling England's vast mountains of waste." "But there is still too much reliance on voluntary measures and precious little commitment to targets to reduce waste and boost recycling," he said. 
Producer pays 
Producers will foot the bill for the packaging and some products they create when it is disposed of - either through a direct payment to waste system or in the form of higher prices paid to others in the supply chain. The government hopes that higher product disposal prices will encourage companies to make them more durable. It is also exploring mandatory guarntees and extended warranties on products to design products that last longer and drive up repair and reuse. The government's Resources and Waste Strategy will also seek to clamp down on waste crime, for example by increasing fines and prison sentences for fly tipping. Wales and Northern Ireland already collect food waste from every household while in Scotland most, although not all, have it collected. 
Courtesy of The Essential Daily Briefing

Further Information

For further information, please visit https://inews.co.uk/news/environment/free-food-waste-collection-for-every-household-in-england/

Food Waste Chief to target 'scandal' of 250m binned UK meals

Published: 7 Jan 2019

Food Waste Chief to target 'scandal' of 250m binned UK meals

The government has appointed a food waste champion to tackle the problem of 250m meals being thrown away in the UK each year. 
Ben Elliot, a philanthropist and co-founder of the lifestyle group Quintessentially, will aim to help the government eliminate food waste going to landfill by 2030. 
He was appointed to the unpaid, voluntary role by Michael Gove, the environment secretary, who described food waste as "an economic, environmental and moral scandal". 
Elliot's first task will be to oversee the Food Waste Fund, a £15m pilot schemewhich will redistribute surplus food, Gove said. 
Working with businesses and other stakeholders from across retail, manufacturing, hospitality and food services, he will also support government consultations on the introduction of mandatory food waste reduction targets and redistribution obligations. 
Elliot said: "While families all over the country struggle to put food on the table and children still go to school each day with empty stomachs, there continues to be an unforgivable amount of food waste, which is both morally deplorable and largely avoidable. 
"As a nation, we need to stop this excessive waste and ensure that surplus food finds its way to people in our society who need it most, and not let it get thrown away and go to landfill." 
In his role as chair of the Quintessentially Foundation, Elliot, who is the Duchess of Cornwall's nephew, has worked with the Felix Project, a charity targeting food waste and food poverty in London which claims to have diverted up to £1bn of surplus food to those in need. 
Currently around 43,000 tonnes of surplus food is redistributed from retailers and food manufacturers every year, the government says. It is estimated a further 100,000 tonnes of food - equating to 250m meals a year - is edible and readily available but goes uneaten. Instead, it is sent away for generating energy from waste, or for animal feed. 
Courtesy of The Guardian

Further Information

For further information, please visit https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/dec/31/food-waste-chief-to-target-scandal-of-250m-binned-uk-meals

Fresh Pod returns to Holland

Published: 18 Dec 2018

Returning to Holland in early January, Fresh Pod are proud to be exhibiting amongst other East Anglian food and drink producers in the UK Pavilion at the country's largest catering trade show, Horecava.  
Heading to RAI Amsterdam on 7th-10th January, the team are participating in an initiative led by Norfolk and Suffolk County Councils, the Department of International trade (DIT), New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), and Norfolk and Suffolk Chambers of Commerce. Noticing earlier on at this year's show that there were virtually no producers from the UK exhibiting, the team are pleased to be amongst the first from the UK to have a presence. 
Heading to the exhibition? Why not set up a meeting - call us on 01603 702374.

Further Information

For further information, please visit https://www.horecava.nl/

Norfolk businesses to be UK's first to exhibit at Holland's largest hospitality trade show

Published: 26 Nov 2018

Norfolk businesses to be UK's first to exhibit at Holland's largest hospitality trade show

Burgeoning trade links between food producers from Norfolk and Suffolk and buyers in the Netherlands will take another step forward when a delegation visits the country's largest hospitality trade show. 
At least 10 businesses from the East of England will be travelling to Horecava in January 2019, and will have a stand alongside 600 other food and drink businesses. 
The trip has been organised by Norfolk County Council, Suffolk County Council, the Department of International trade (DIT), New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), and Norfolk and Suffolk Chambers of Commerce. 
Yare Valley Oils is one of those confirmed for the trip, which was organised following the Local Flavours show in September, which boosted trade relations between the region and the Netherlands. 
Dom Whyte of the Surlingham-based company said: "Going to a trade show in Holland is something we never would have done, and never would have even thought to do if it weren't for this." 
Yare Valley Oils, which presses rape seed into high-quality oil, will be joined by Bullards Gin, James White Drinks, Essence Monty's Foods, Quickfill, Paddy & Scotts, Taste of Suffolk, Algy's Popcorn, Fresh Pod, Nova Farina, Giffords Hall Vineyard and Stokes Sauces on the trip. 
Mr Whyte added: "We spoke to some Dutch delegates at Local Flavours and they believe there's a market for us over there, because currently there's not a comparable rapeseed oil product of the same quality." 
The business already exports in small quantities to Sweden and the US, but rarely to Holland. However it is hoping the show will also be a foot in the door to other markets. 
"There will also be some Belgian and German buyers at the show, which is a market we had never even considered. We don't have deals with major national brands in the UK because we have such good links with independent shops, but selling in higher quantities over there wouldn't affect business here," Mr Whyte said. 
Doug Field, chairman of New Anglia LEP, said: "The businesses here have it all: deep knowledge and experience of food and drink production, innovative thinking and entrepreneurial spirit. This delegation from the East of England will have first mover advantage to enter the Dutch market via this route with great professional and financial support." 
There are still places available to join the trip. 
The subsidised stand positions are aimed at small and medium-sized enterprises while larger companies have an opportunity to sponsor the stand. Contact Robert Ediker from The Lively Crew at robert@thelivelycrew.co.uk or on 01603 702374.

Further Information

For further information, please visit https://www.edp24.co.uk/business/norfolk-businesses-first-in-country-to-exhibit-holland-trade-show-1-5789367

Catch the Fresh Pod team at an event near you this Summer

Published: 8 May 2018

The Fresh Pod team will be out and about over the coming months to spread the word about reducing your fruit and vegetable waste. Estimated to save the average UK family £700 a year, Fresh Pod is the best companion for your fridge - keeping your fruit and vegetables fresher for up to 4 times longer. Be sure to pop by an event and say 'hello' to the team who will be on hand to offer food storage advice and tips, and will have 12 month kits and refill kits available for purchase. 
Fresh Pod will be at: 
• One Planet Norwich Festival, 9th-10th June at The Forum, Norwich. Free entry 
• Greenbuild, 8th-9th September at Felbrigg Hall, North Norfolk. Free entry 
We hope to see you there!

Flowers as fresh as ever this Valentine's Day and Mother's Day

Published: 7 Feb 2017

Flowers as fresh as ever this Valentine's Day and Mother's Day

Shops and warehouses are currently packed to the brim with fresh flowers, it must be coming up to Valentine's Day, Mother's Day and Easter - the busiest time of year for the flora industry. 
With an increase in stock to cope with demand, storage and preservation of flowers can be challenging - no matter what size of space is being used. A considerable increase in Ethylene, airborne bacteria, spores, moulds and rots in the transport and storage area environments can play havoc with maintaining shelf life during storage, preparation and final delivery to customers. 
How we can help 
Fresh Pod has been working the commercial flora industry for many years, providing solutions for all circumstances and all year round protection. 
A simple and effective product, it removes: 
- Ethylene 
- Airborne bacteria 
- Spores 
- Moulds 
- Rots 
from transport and storage area environments - preventing foliage and flowers from being spoiled, therefore extending their shelf life - particularly useful when mixing blooms in storage and in arrangements. 
We have a range of products that provide effective solutions to keeping your bouquets beautiful, fragrant and fresh for longer - from when the flowers are picked through to delivery to the end user and beyond. 
Our products 
We can offer 5, 9 and 28 gram sachets that can be placed in boxes to remove Ethylene when flowers are being stored and transported. 
We also provide box filters and machines that can be placed in store rooms to protect a whole room, keeping flowers in the best condition possible. 
What our customers say 
"We now use the Ethylene absorbing sachets in all boxes of flowers that we ship out. The results on Cymbidium, Ranunculus, Peonies, Phalaenopsis and some varieties of Daffodils have been fantastic.  
We highly trust Fresh Pod as the results have been so positive for us - a must when transporting flowers to keep them at their best." 
Get in touch with us to see how we can help you today - call us on +44 (0)1603 702374 or email us info@freshpod.co.uk

The tip of the iceberg: Lettuce rationed on nation's supermarket shelves

Published: 3 Feb 2017

The tip of the iceberg: Lettuce rationed on nation's supermarket shelves

Vegetable lovers left reeling from the recent courgette shortage have been dealt a new devastating blow, as supermarkets confirm the salad days are truly over with a lettuce shortage on UK shelves. 
Supermarkets have rationed the number of lettuces each customer can purchase in stores and iceberg, sweet gem and romaine varieties have been taken off sale completely by some online. 
The latest eggplant in the face in the European vegetable shortage, follows similar reductions in the supply of courgettes, salad peppers, brocolli and cabbage. 
An extreme mix of drought followed by flooding and freezing conditions has severely affected growers in southern Spain, while poor conditions have also hit farmers in Italy, Greece and Turkey. 
Experts have warned that if the weather does not improve in the coming weeks the problem may continue until April, with customers hit by price rises. 
London retail analyst Rob Gregory posted a photo on Twitter of empty boxes in a Tesco and a sign that read: "Due to continued weather problems in Spain, there is a shortage on Iceberg and other varied lettuce products. 
"To protect the availability for all customers, we are limiting bulk purchases to three per person." 
Sarah Morton, from Manchester, tweeted a photo of a Morrisons shelf label stating customers could only buy a maximum of two each. 
She wrote: "Why? I don't get it @Morrisons £arewerunningout.. £lettuce & £HOWMUCH££" 
Supermarkets have been forced to look as far afield as the US west coast - more than 5,300 miles from Britain - to meet demand.

Further Information

For further information, please visit http://www.edp24.co.uk/news/the_tip_of_the_iceberg_lettuce_rationed_on_nation_s_supermarket_shelves_1_4875162

Banana prices rise as Brexit bites

Published: 30 Nov 2016

Banana prices rise as Brexit bites

Unfavourable exchange rates force four major supermarkets to increase banana prices in past two weeks. 
Banana prices have risen for the first time in five years, with loose bananas up 4p per kilo at Asda, Morrisons, Lidl and Aldi. 
Aldi was the first to increase prices two weeks ago, and was quickly followed by the other three retailers. 
Barring a couple of short-lived price rises related to temporary production shortages, banana prices at Britain's major retailers have remained at or below 68p per kilo since 2011. 
The recent price rises appear to be related to the rising cost of imports linked to the post-Brexit devaluation of the pound. Bananas are generally bought in dollars, making the weakness of the pound problematic. 
This has forced supermarkets to renegotiate their arrangements with suppliers, but some retailers are now starting to struggle to absorb these costs. 
Asda, Morrisons, Lidl and Aldi - which are currently sourcing their bananas from Costa Rica, Cameroon, Colombia and Belize respectively - have all increased the price of a kilo of loose bananas from 68p to 72p - a rise of six per cent. 
Aldi has also changed the pricing on its packs of bananas, switching from 68p for 1kg to five bananas for 72p. This amounts to an even more significant price rise than in loose bananas since five bananas often weigh less than 700g, the Guardian reported. 
Tesco, Sainsbury's and Waitrose, meanwhile - all of which source their bananas from Colombia at this time of year - have kept their prices at 68p. Likewise, M&S Food, which is getting its supply from the Ivory Coast, has stuck with the 68p price tag.

Further Information

For further information, please visit http://www.fruitnet.com/fpj/article/170729/banana-prices-rise-as-brexit-bites?utm_source=Banana+prices+rise+as+Brexit+bites%3B+Sainsbury%E2%80%99s+win

Research underpins need for Scottish business leadership on food waste

Published: 25 Nov 2016

Scottish businesses have been urged to provide "clear leadership" on food waste, as new research shows that an estimated 1.35 million tonnes of food and drink is wasted in the country each year. 
Pioneering research prepared by Zero Waste Scotland has quantified food waste for all sectors of the Scottish economy. The report finds that while households accounted for 44% of the country's waste in 2013, the majority in fact came from the commercial and industrial sector. 
While the overwhelming majority of Scottish businesses are now following environmental regulations, Zero Waste Scotland insists that companies must step up efforts to address expensive supply chain and landfill waste to ensure efficiency and competitiveness. 
Zero Waste Scotland chief executive Iain Gulland said: "When we talk about the true scale of food waste in Scotland we need to look at the whole supply chain. Whilst household food waste remains the biggest sector, the fact that over half comes from business and public sector shows that we need clear leadership in these areas to make the transformative change we all want to see. 
"Our research shows for the first time the true scale of the challenge we face to achieve Scotland's ambitious food waste reduction target - but it's one we are determined to take on together. Tackling the scale of wasted food in our society is an economic, environmental and moral imperative." 
Business support 
According to the research, an estimated 740,000 tonnes of solid food and drink waste were produced in commercial and industrial sectors in 2013. Of this amount, the manufacturing industry accounted for around 510,000 tonnes, while the hospitality and retail sectors wasted an estimated combined total of 85,000 tonnes. 
Food and drink accounts for approximately 20% of Scotland's carbon footprint from consumption. To combat this, the Scottish Government recently set an ambitious target to reduce food and drink waste by 33% by 2025 compared to a 2013 baseline. Gulland believes that collaboration with organisations from all sections of the supply chain will help to develop policy options to meet the target. 
"We have made a good start," he said. "Since putting the issue of food waste on the map we have worked to reduce household food waste, resulting in a 6% decrease. We're also providing small and medium sized businesses (SMEs) with dedicated advice and support to reduce their food waste and related costs." 
Circular dreams 
The statistics come amid various attempts from the Scottish Government to deliver high waste reduction across the country. Zero Waste Scotland are currently seeking candidates to apply for the title of Scotland's third 'Zero Waste Town' by demonstrating a commitment to circular economy principles. 
SEPA recently published its new environmental regulation strategy, which will set about the task of helping regulated businesses reduce all forms of waste beyond compliance standards in ways that improves profitability and long-term viability. 
Earlier this year, the Government unveiled its first ever circular economy strategy, outlining bold plans to significantly reduce the country's waste in the food and construction sectors and promote recycling and reuse.

Further Information

For further information, please visit http://www.edie.net/news/5/Research-underpins-need-for-Scottish-business-leadership-on-food-waste%20/?utm_source=dailynewsletter,%20edie%20daily%20new

Could you help save broccoli from going to waste in Norfolk?

Published: 24 Nov 2016

An environmental organisation will be embarking on a mission to save vegetables in Norfolk from going to waste this Friday and are seeking last minute volunteers to lend a hand. 
Feedback are an environmental group working to eliminate food waste at every level, who specialise in shining a light on the hidden causes of waste across the food supply chain. 
On Friday, November 25 the organisation and its volunteers will be headed to Norfolk to salvage broccoli from a farm near Fakenham and redistribute it to FareShare, a charity that aims to fight hunger through the collection of surplus food. 
Formed in 2009, Feedback has created various campaigns over the years to help in the fight against food waste, including The Gleaning Network which is what will bring the team to the region this week. 
Christina O'Sullivan, Communications Coordinator at Feedback, said: "Our gleaning network coordinates volunteers, farmers and food redistribution charities to salvage the thousands of tonnes of fresh fruit and vegetables that are wasted on farms every year across the UK, and direct this fresh, nutritious food to people in need. 
"We find out where food is being wasted, recruit volunteers to help harvest the food and then give it out to charities." 
She added: "We're still looking for people to help at our glean in Norfolk on Friday, so please do sign up and come along to witness the colossal waste first-hand. It'll be a great social day out for a fantastic cause!"

Further Information

For further information, please visit http://www.edp24.co.uk/news/could_you_help_save_broccoli_from_going_to_waste_in_norfolk_1_4790761?utm_source=Twitter&utm_medium=Social_Icon&utm_campai

Local Flavours - Delivered to You

Published: 9 Nov 2016

Local Flavours - Delivered to You

Following a successful fourth year of Local Flavours, the team behind the effort to get local food and drink on the shelves and menus of buyers from across the UK are launching a new initiative, to get consumers thinking about where food and drink comes from.  
In September, Local Flavours attracted over 1,000 buyers and 100 producers to meet and do business. Tens of thousands of pounds of business has been done through the event over the past four years. It has also got many local products manufactured in the region on the shelves and menus of many large national organisations, as well as plenty more on local menus and retail shelves.  
Having created and grown the annual trade event to become the biggest of its kind in the region, the organisers - The Lively Crew (TLC), have grown a reputation with food and drink producers as well as many businesses and local councils to deliver sustainable activity which benefits the local economy, and in many ways, winning the trust and respect of all those involved. 
With this trust TLC has had many requests from food and drink producers in the local area to explore other channels to market under the "Local Flavours" brand.  
Local Flavours - Delivered to You.  
Educating consumers on the benefits of buying locally produced food and drink is high on the agenda. Traceability and food security is very much part of that. Keeping spend in the local economy will benefit producers and the wider business community.  
Launching in November at South Norfolk Council's office, Local Flavours "Delivered to You" is a deliver to your desk service aimed at councils and larger businesses or clusters of businesses in the Eastern region. Aimed at employees of large organisations, this unique service will give producers many opportunities to reach potential consumers who may for one reason or another not have considered seeking out local produce or not have had the time to do so (never leave their desk at lunchtime).  
As a collective force local producers will get their produce in front of potential customers and away from the distraction of retailer's shelves, where they often compete with many major national brands.  
However, this is only a monthly service into a business or organisation, moving forward Local Flavours "Delivered to You" aims to point consumers to outlets locally where they can pick up promoted food and drink, in between monthly drops to their desks, supporting retailers such as the East of England Co-op, Roy's and Jarrolds, to name a few who actively stock and support locally produced food and drink.  
Once a month a catalogue and order form will land on the desk or on the computer screen of employees working for organisations participating in the scheme. Orders will be collected and delivered a week later to the office.  
A Local Flavours market stall will set up on delivery day where employees who participate in the delivery scheme will pick up recipe ideas, be introduced to seasonal offerings and enjoy regular sampling and other food and drink related activity. All aimed at the continuing education of getting over the benefits of buying (even if only a jar of jam every month) and keeping the pound in the local economy.  
South Norfolk Council are working with The Lively Crew to get the latest scheme off the ground. South Norfolk Council have been a sponsor and supporter of Local Flavours, the annual trade event since it began in 2013. Subsidising stand space for businesses based in the district so even the smallest start up producer can experience and participate in meeting national buyers (some as big as Tesco and Morrison's) and in a supportive and less intimidating environment, which is often the case if visiting a national head office.  
Local Flavours "Delivered to You" aims to grow the service through other councils, organisations and businesses over the coming months and quite quickly.  
Councillor Clayton Hudson, South Norfolk cabinet member for Stronger Communities and Leisure said, "The Council is pleased to be able to support Local Flavours and our excellent, local food and drink producers. Delivered to You makes it even easier to buy great quality, locally produced food and drink, helping the local economy and helping the environment by cutting food miles." 
Valerie Watson-Brown, Director of TLC Local Flavours "Delivered to You" is a great opportunity to get local producer recognised on their doorstep and to educate consumers on the many benefits of spending money within the local community. We have a fantastic range of food and drink produced locally and this latest Local Flavours initiative will go way above any other activity to date to promote producers and as a collective".  
"It is possible because councils and local businesses can see a clear benefit to the local economy and in measurable terms and where else will consumers get such an opportunity to sample such fine produce without the need to even leave their workspace".  
Any business or organisation interested in participating in the scheme should contact Faye Bullard, telephone 01603 702374 or email faye@thelivelycrew.co.uk

Climate Conference Aims To Put Paris Agreement Into Action

Published: 8 Nov 2016

Climate Conference Aims To Put Paris Agreement Into Action

Leaders from 195 countries are meeting in Morocco to discuss how to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions. 
The United Nations climate change conference began Monday and runs through Nov. 18. It is the first major climate meeting since the Paris climate change agreement was passed at last year's conference. 
The main goal of that agreement is to prevent catastrophic warming of the earth by "[holding] the increase in global average temperature to well below 2 degrees [Celsius] above pre-industrial levels." 
As we have reported, the global average temperature has already risen about 1 degree Celsius, relative to pre-industrial levels. 
To meet the 2-degree goal, each country that signed on to the Paris agreement has already submitted a national plan for how it will curb greenhouse gas emissions. India, for example, promised to generate 40 percent of its electricity with non-fossil fuel sources by 2030. 
The U.S. plan promised to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across the economy by 26 percent to 28 percent in 2025, compared to 2005 levels. The U.S. is the second-largest emitter of greenhouse gasses after China. 
The Chinese government also signed onto the plan, pledging that emissions there will peak in 2030 and then decline. 
But there are still questions about how to hold countries accountable for their pledges, and how to pay for some of the initiatives countries describe in their plans. Those issues will both come up at the conference underway in Morocco. 
Susan Phillips of NPR member station WHYY is covering the conference in Marrakech, Morrocco, and reported that, "Developing nations want wealthier countries to help finance their efforts to reduce emissions and prepare for rising sea levels." 
As The Two-Way has reported, India has called on the U.S. and other countries to share technologies that help decrease emissions. 
The timing of the U.S. presidential election during the conference could be relevant to the question of accountability, since the two major-party presidential candidates disagree on how the U.S. should or shouldn't implement the climate agreement. 
Phillips reports Hillary Clinton wants to continue the pledges the U.S. agreed to in Paris and boost renewable energy like solar, while Donald Trump says he wants to pull the U.S out of the climate agreement and burn more coal. 
At a State Department briefing last week, the director for energy and climate change for the National Security Council, John Morton, told reporters, "obviously, I think there is a great deal of interest not just domestically, but internationally in terms of what the election outcome will be." He acknowledged "the candidates have very different views on climate." 
Morton said that, although the outcome of the election could affect "how quickly the U.S. moves [to limit emissions] ... the international community is moving forward." 
Morton continued: 
"I think what we have seen in recent months and, in fact, in recent years is a recognized inevitability of the transition to a low-carbon economy. And so the international community - the international business community, the international policy community - is moving forward and will continue to move forward." 
"I think the question of commitment to action is no longer one which is being debated," Morton said, adding that the issue at hand is "frankly, who will lead and who will benefit most from this transition to a lower-carbon economy." 
Courtesy of NPR News

Further Information

For further information, please visit http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/11/08/501194848/climate-conference-aims-to-put-paris-agreement-into-action

On a mission to climb Kilimanjaro for local charity ZSEA

Published: 28 Oct 2016

On a mission to climb Kilimanjaro for local charity ZSEA

Our Fresh Pod Director is on a mission. Our passion for supporting the environment extends to wildlife and during a recent conversation on worldwide animal conservation she agreed to attempt a climb of Kilimanjaro for the Zoological Society of East Anglia (ZSEA). 
The attempt in January 2017 needs encouragement and support, so to help with the climb and during the month of November, anyone purchasing a consumer Fresh Pod 12 month kit will see 20% of their purchase donated to the ZSEA charity. 
Everyone is a winner, the buyer will enjoy less waste and more money in the pocket, the planet will benefit from reduced landfill, animal conservation will get a boost and our Director Valerie will push harder in training in view of the support coming in. 
With Christmas around the corner, shop early and treat family and friends to a 12 month Fresh Pod kit. Visit the website and quote ZSEA20 in the promotional code box when placing your order. Alternatively ring 01603 702374 and we can take your order over the phone.

Avoid the dreaded droop this Mother's Day!

Published: 26 Feb 2016

Avoid the dreaded droop this Mother's Day!

Being one of the busiest times of the year for the horticultural industry, keeping flowers fresh from cutting, through to the end user can be at times stressful and wasteful.  
Crowded store rooms, transportation, shops and boxes create an Ethylene filled environment which shortens a flower's life span, meaning more waste, more costs and less display time.  
The situation is even worse at busy times of year when ordering more stock and is magnified when different species are mixed together in storage or on display.  
Flowers give off Ethylene gas naturally as they age. They are also sensitive to the gas which causes them to deteriorate causing a whole host of different symptoms, including premature flowering, drooping buds, leaf discolouration and release, brown buds etc.  
Whether in transport, in shipping or airline containers, boxes, stored in warehouses, retail environments in displays of delivered to homes; flowers are constantly in danger of early deterioration from Ethylene gas.  
There is a simple and effective solution and costs pennies - Fresh Pod.  
Fresh Pod is a 100% safe and natural, and it works by removing Ethylene and other airborne rots, spores and molds in storage and transport which will ensure fresh produce stays in tip top condition through the journey from harvesting to the end user, giving flexibility in the sales process whilst extending the life by up to four times.  
Whether needing that extra help with freshness at busy times of the year or ongoing protection, Fresh Pod will save you time and money reducing waste and costs associated with it.  
For more information, contact Robert on 01603 702374 or email us - robert@freshpod.co.uk  
PS Our sister product Chill Pod provides bespoke protection from temperature fluctuation in storage and transport. Visit the website (www.enviro-pod.co.uk) for more information on our unique thermal material.

Fresh Pod will be exhibiting at Fruit Logisitica 2016

Published: 25 Jan 2016

Fresh Pod will be exhibiting at Fruit Logisitica 2016

Happy New Year to you!  
Fresh Pod and Chill Pod are excited to announce that we will be exhibiting at Fruit Logistica 2016, 3rd - 5th February, Berlin - alongside our partners Panalpina and Jupiter Marketing.  
Aside from updating visitors to the stand on how Fresh Pod gives many growers, producers, wholesalers, exporters and importers more flexibility through the post-harvest process. We can advise on reducing stock losses and maximizing profitability.  
Fresh Pod has a solution for all businesses working with fruit, vegetables and flowers across the supply chain. It also works well with and is approved for use with organics.  
Our sister company Chill Pod will be joining Fresh Pod on the stand, launching a new space saver product which can be used for transport and temporary storage of produce in a chilled, warm or ambient environment.  
Independently tested and approved to hold an acceptable temperature for hours, as well as out performing other thermal retaining materials on the market.  
For more information on Fresh Pod or Chill Pod contact Mike on (+44)1603 702374 or email us info@freshpod.co.uk  
If visiting Fruit Logistica and you wish for a more formal one to one meeting, let us know what time and day you will be at the show.

Kitchen storage solutions - for excessive times of year

Published: 16 Dec 2015

Enjoy 10% off Fresh Pod or Chill Pod commercial and/or consumer products for your business, your home or as a gift.  
Fresh Pod works extremely well in a consumer or commercial environment. It keeps fruit and vegetables crispy, tasty and fresh for up to 4 times longer, reducing food waste, saving money and contributing to a greener environment (works with flowers too).  
The perfect fridge companion at those times of the year when purchasing and storing more produce than usual. Fresh Pod is completely safe and natural and for the consumer, it comes in a 12-month kit to give your fridge and fruit bowl protection for a whole year.  
With the average household wasting over £480 of fresh produce every year, Fresh Pod will save a family a fortune (in fact pay for Xmas 2016).  
Visit our website www.freshpod.co.uk for more details and to order, use code XMAS10 at the checkout to claim 10% off your order. Alternatively call the team on 01603 702374.  
Plenty in stock but order by Friday 18th December to ensure delivery before filling up on fresh produce in the home, or to make sure your gift shopping is completed in time for the 25th December.  
Available in sachets, filter or plug in form, a solution for all transport and storage areas. Ideal for use when coping with extended periods of time between deliveries over a bank holiday period, or any time when collecting and storing more produce than usual.  
Fresh Pod is already working in commercial areas across the food chain as well as across Europe, including working in farm storage, importing and exporting, wholesaling, retail, hospitality and catering, as well as in the home.  
Protecting boxes, containers, fridges and store rooms, shops and restaurants and the largest of warehouses, Fresh Pod have solutions to suit all situations.  
For more information on commercial storage telephone Valerie on 01603 702374 or email info@freshpod.co.uk  
The Chill Pod range, including Thermal Space Saver  
Keeps produce warm or chilled at an acceptable temperature for up to 9 hours without the need for electricity or other aids.  
With consumer and commercial solutions, developed from NASA's research into reflective materials, Chill Pod is your mobile fridge or food warmer. Perfect for creating additional spaces in the kitchen or when transporting goods, especially when the usual storage space is already full.  
The consumer bags come in a choice of two styles and either as a wipe clean material, or a soft material which is machine The consumer bags come in a choice of two styles and either as a wipe clean material, or a soft material which is machine washable. Ideal for shopping, for temporary storage in transport or in the home.  
"I have used this bag many times and I have found it is brilliant. When travelling it will keep frozen food for a long journey and it is brilliant for picnics, the food is like it has just come out of the fridge. Love it for storing my shopping, bought at lunch time and not home until 6, still chilled" - Chill Pod user  
Commercial customers can choose from standard products or bespoke roll cage covers, pallet covers, tote bags and space saver kits depending on needs. There are limited standard products in stock available for despatch now and before Christmas week (subject to availability).  
For our full range of products please visit www.enviro-pod.co.uk, telephone 01603 702374 to check for availability.  
We wish all our readers a special festive season and a prosperous 2016. Working together we can make a positive impact on climate change.

Fresh Pod - Food Matters Live 2015

Published: 15 Dec 2015

Fresh Pod recently exhibited at Food Matters Live 2015 where we made it to the finals of the Unilever Innovation Awards. We are really pleased to have been recognised for the work we do in reducing food waste in the consumer and commercial world.

Fresh Pod support Unicef on World Food Day

Published: 19 Oct 2015

To help raise awareness of World Food Day, Fresh Pod will donate 20% of each sale of their 12 month kits between Friday 16th October and Friday 30th October to Unicef.  
Unicef work in over 190 countries in the world, actively helping hungry and malnourished children and providing 80% of the world's life-saving emergency food.  
World Food Day originated in 1979 and celebrates the creation of the 'Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) on 16th October 1945. It is a day of action that highlights the issues of severe hunger and poverty, and encourages supporters to come together to raise awareness and promote affirmative action to assist in finding a solution to this ongoing problem.  
The day is supported by over 150 countries, all of whom assist in the fight against chronic hunger and food waste. Hunger kills more people every year than Malaria, Tuberculosis and Aids combined.  
Chronic hunger can be stopped with the help of every individual.  
A third of the food produced in the world for human consumption - approximately 1.3 billion tons is lost or wasted. In the UK alone on average £480 of food is wasted per year with an estimated 66% being fruit and vegetables.  
You can do your bit to help eradicate food waste by purchasing a 12 month supply kit from Fresh Pod.  
Fresh Pod is an innovative product that can extend the life of your fruit and vegetables by up to four times as long without reducing taste and quality. It can help you stop unnecessary food waste and sustain a greener footprint. Fresh Pod is non toxic, completely natural and safe to use.  
A 12 month kit is £12.99 (including p&p).  
To buy your Fresh Pod 12 month kit and ensure that 20% of your purchase goes to Unicef, enter code WFD2015 at the checkout.  
Email us or call 01603 702374 to speak to one of the team.  
Offer runs from Friday 16th October until Friday 30th October.  
Fresh Pod makes the perfect Christmas gift so make sure you stock up now and support Unicef with your efforts.

Fresh Pod trial outcome and storage tips - Dan Neuteboom of Real English Fruit.

Published: 2 Sep 2015

Fresh Pod trial outcome and storage tips - Dan Neuteboom of Real English Fruit.

Founded around a very successful 12-month consumer kit to reduce fresh produce waste, Fresh Pod launched their commercial filters 5 years ago and now have over 50 of their powered ethylene filters in use as well as hundreds of box filters for smaller commercial stores.  
The founder's core ethos has remained in the reduction of post harvest waste though concerned that they are only reaching the larger players in the sector who better to ask for guidance than Dan Neuteboom of Real English Fruit who has used one of their box filters for the last 11 months.  
Gaining his degree in Agriculture and Horticulture in his native Netherlands and following practical experience on fruit farms in Germany and France, Dan planted his first orchard of 30 acres in East Suffolk in 1960. In partnership with other local growers, gradually more acres were planted. Between 1972 and 1978 he served on the Management committee of East Malling Research Station and today maintains his involvement by supplying local markets as well as having his own market outlet.  
Dan Neuteboom 'The increased rate of ripening caused by ethylene and therefore a reduced storage life of the fruit has been known for some time. With great success we used the ethylene remover called Fresh Pod. In summary the fruit kept better and over a longer period, without losing its flavour or firmness. However the following points need to be taken in consideration.  
- It is best to store fruit which is slightly under ripe. This in order to maintain fruit firmness.  
- Varieties which by nature are suitable for extended storage life, will produce the best result.  
- Gather the fruit for storage, when the fruit is at its coolest; early in the morning.  
- Store the fruit in open crates to ensure good air circulation.  
- Make sure the filter is placed in the air stream, direct off the cooler.  
- Do not store damaged fruit, but only the best undamaged ones.  
- At all times remove regularly, fruits which show early fruit rot spots, once in store.  
- Keep up humidity level during the storage period  
- Storage temperature needs to be ideally, around 3 to 4 degree Celcius.  
- Keep the storage area rodent free. Mice love fruit as well!  
Drawing on these ten recommendations the 20 inch box filter was used by Dan for an 11 month period in a fruit store roughly the size of a shipping container after which the filter media was checked for efficacy. Most of the media had been utilized and there was roughly a month or so of life left in it.  
Given the onset of the apple and pear season it made sense to change it however to ensure another 12 months of clean air as its scrubs out air borne fungal spores and bacteria as well as ethylene.

Have you ever stopped and thought about how much money you waste throwing uneaten food in the bin?

Published: 18 Aug 2015

Food waste - some simple tips to save you £00's per year 
Since 2007 avoidable food and drink waste (that which could have been consumed) has been reduced by 21% saving consumers £3.3bn a year. There is still however 7 million tonnes, most of which could have been consumed, being thrown away at a cost of £12.5bn a year and immeasurable costs to the environment. 
By adopting a few simple habits in the way we manage our kitchens it is possible to save several hundred pounds a year per household to spend on more enjoyable things like a holiday. It could pay for the car tax and insurance as well as a service probably if you feel you may be a serious offender! 
Make full use of them and most importantly check the temperature with a thermometer. The recommended temperature is between 0°C and 5°C to keep food fresher for longer. 
The perfect way to manage our food. Store portion size meals in air tight containers and date them for future use. 
Shopping lists 
It may seem 'old hat' but its well proven that by checking the cupboards and fridge before you go shopping and making a list of what you need will save overbuying and as a consequence overspending on what may ultimately end up in the bin. 
Pasta and Rice 
Always keep a stock of these staple foods so that you can be creative with whatever you have leftover in the fridge and make a nourishing meal 
Keep devices to hand 
Weighing scales, measuring jugs, freezer bags, labels and bag clips should be kept conveniently to hand to ensure portion sizes are controlled and any leftovers swiftly and properly stored for future use. 
Airtight containers 
Keep a range of sizes for storing and labeling leftovers for future use. Pasta dishes or Shepherd's pie for instance can be safely stored in the fridge for a couple of days or for longer in the freezer. 
All bread type products are best stored in a bread bin or cupboard not left out on a board unless you plan to eat it immediately. 
Fruit and vegetables 
With the exception of potatoes and bananas all fruit and vegetables are best kept in the fridge and free from the ethylene gas which they naturally produce to ripen themselves. If you use a fruit bowl adding bananas to it will ripen, and as a consequence rot, your fruit quicker as their respiratory rates of ethylene are very high...hang them separately at room temperature. Potatoes are best stored in a dark place reducing the risk of them shooting or going green. 
Fresh Pod is a useful piece of equipment which costs pence but can actually extend the life of fruit and vegetables in your fridge or fruit bowl. 100% safe and natural it works by removing Ethylene and will extend the life of fruit and vegetables by up to four times.  
These simple steps will become habits, if they are not already, and eventually embed themselves into the way you manage your food purchasing and consumption. Government research indicates that a saving of up to £680 per year for the average household is the reward for your efforts...that is £1.86 per day in your pocket for reducing the impact on the environment. 
Mike Brown 
Director of Fresh Pod 
(and food lover)

Waste Week - West Walton Schoolchildren get new 'Vege Pals'

Published: 3 Mar 2015

As part of national Waste Week, on 6th March children at West Walton School will be following Miranda Hart in making their own Vege Pals to show that even misshapen fruit and veg can be made interesting. 
As well as making the Vege Pals, the children will each be given a Fresh Pod to take home for their parents to put in their fridge salad drawer to keep their Vege Pal fresh for up to four times longer than normal. 
Vege Pals is a joint initiative between West Walton School and the waste and recycling team at the Borough Council of King's Lynn & West Norfolk where Councillor Brian Long is both portfolio holder, and local Councillor for the school. 
Councillor Long said: 
"At present, In the UK, over 10% of the food and drink we buy in our weekly shop ends up in the bin when it could have been eaten. Two out of five pieces of fruit or veg don't even make it into the shops as they're deemed too 'ugly' to sell by supermarkets. That's a lot of unnecessary food waste that we have to deal with. 
"I think it's great that the school is participating in this event. It's a fun way to get over a serious message - that we can all save money and create less waste if we worry less about how our vegetables look, and more about how they taste. It also clearly shows how we can all buy, store and use our fruit and vegetables more wisely." 
West Walton School is part of the Windmill Primary Federation, consisting of West Walton, Terrington St. John, Walpole Highway, and Tilney St. Lawrence Primary Schools. Executive Headteacher across the partnership, Ms J Davis, said: 
"We like to encourage our pupils to be aware of the world around them, and to know that they can play an active part in shaping that world. Making Vege Pals, and taking home a Fresh Pod to keep fruit and veg fresh for longer, is a really practical way of showing their mums and dads that we can all do something to reduce food waste."  
Fresh Pod is a local Norwich company, and local Norfolk people have been quick to pick up on the difference it can make in preventing fruit and veg from deteriorating too quickly. As part of the Council's drive to reduce food waste, Food Pods will soon be available to buy from the same distribution centres as the bags for the Borough's food waste caddies.  
The Director of Fresh Pod, Valerie Watson-Brown, said: 
"We're delighted to play our part in showing local children, and their mums and dads that we all need to be more aware of wasting food. We hope that by making the Fresh Pod available across the Borough of King's Lynn & West Norfolk, we can ensure that everyone will have the opportunity to prevent food waste and save money." 
Vege Pals is part of Waste Week driven by EDF Energy on their Pod website (http://jointhepod.org/home) , which contains lots of interesting educational resources and information for schools and community groups.

Brassica & Leafy Salad Conference 2015 - Inspired thoughts!

Published: 10 Feb 2015

Mike Brown - Fresh Pod, Technical Director. 
Bringing together the Brassica and Leafy Salad's annual conferences for 2015 worked well and with that broadened the speaker content. Whilst the conference presentations are always very good I felt that this year everyone of them was exceptional and very topical. 
The price pressures on fresh produce are well documented and last year saw a lot of merger and acquisition activity in the sector in an effort to scale up further and drive down unit costs. Not surprisingly then Meurig's opening address focussed on production efficiencies through science, political lobbying and continued effort with supply chain management- all essential to maintain farming's fundamental contribution to the economy. 
This was further endorsed by Elena Ozeritska 
It was delightful to see a familiar young graduates name highlighted as part of the team working on the storage life of broccoli. Lisa Wray-French, now working with Debbie Rees, Karen Thurston and Richard Colgan at Greenwich used our consumer Fresh Pod product as the basis for her masters dissertation a couple of years ago and as a piece of work it's quite brilliant in its structure and detail. If anyone would like a copy then do email us as it's essential that these rising stars in the sector get recognised for the major contributions that they make.  
Edward Garner's informative presentation 'the perfect storm' on grocery retailing led perfectly into that made by Azmina Govindji. Azmina is a key opinion leader on nutrition and her message 'just one more' makes perfect sense to encourage more consumption of fruit and vegetables. 
Finally I must highlight Rick Antle's contribution to the conference. Family controlled businesses are as fundamental to the American economy as they are in the UK. Since I did my masters in 2008 on that very subject the continuous use of 'SME' in the UK when making reference to them irks me as it is an injustice and dismissive. They have unique qualities of their own, more often than not great values and seem to have resilience to recessions like no other structure. Ricks forthright stance on Quality, Service, Innovation, Attitude, Ownership and Accountability held nothing back...it was so heartening to hear. 
Tanimura & Antle are the biggest salad producer in the world it seems so who better to ask about waste reduction than Rick himself. You could have knocked me over when he said EC's from California...the very ones we are importing under licence here in Europe as well as the machines we developed with them. 'We have them in our coolers but once the produce leaves us it's someone else's problem'...if the fresh produce supply chain really was simplified to the point that each component was accountable as it is in Ricks world maybe we would start making some inroads into that waste problem??

We're exhibiting at Food Matters Live!

Published: 11 Nov 2014

Food Matters Live is a highly professional unique show unlike any other in the Food and Drink Sector - and subsequently there are many unique opportunities at FML for visitors from NPD, Production, R&D, Packaging and Marketing.  
Taking place at London's ExCeL from Tuesday 18 to Thursday 20 November, Food Matters Live is a unique cross-sector forum that's set to attract some 10,000 visitors from the worlds of health, nutrition, research, food and drink retail & manufacturing and government.  
It will offer professionals from the industry a host of opportunities to network and collaborate with key figures from across the food and drink sectors, as well as to explore solutions to some of the most urgent issues on the UK's health agenda. 
Food Matters Live is supported by the most influential bodies, across Government, the food and drink industry, academia, R&D and highly regarded health and nutrition professionals - reflecting the breadth of the event's content, its stakeholders and participants. 
Top tier supporters include the Department of Health, the British Dietetic Association, the Institute of Food Science and Technology, the Food and Drink Federation, Leatherhead Research and Campden BRI. 
The three-day event will host a carefully planned exhibition featuring 200 leading organisations, as well as providing an unrivalled education programme delivered by more than 450 speakers.  
Conference sessions will feature world-leading experts in nutrition, health and food trends, as well as government ministers, writers and broadcasters, while a wide range of seminars will examine a broad range of topics, from the alarming rise of childhood malnutrition to new ingredients that promise cognitive or cardiovascular health benefits. 
We have been approached by several large food manufacturers and retailers such as KP Snacks, Unilever, Tesco, Nestle etc who have recognised the hugely relevant educational and research opportunities at Food Matters Live, to hold guided tours or 'meet and greets' for their staff where they will be using visits to Food Matters Live as training and personal development days.  
You can register for free tickets at www.foodmatterslive.com

Eating fruits and vegetables early in life lowers heart disease risk by 40 percent as we age

Published: 5 Nov 2014

It is common knowledge that eating vegetables and fruits is part of a sensible diet, and yet millions of otherwise health-conscious people ignore this advice and continue to nosh on a variety of processed junk foods placing them at considerable risk to succumb to the leading killer of men and women in the US and western societies. Mortality statistics clearly show that more than half of all deaths each year are due to cardiovascular disease, a largely preventable illness that can squelch life in an instant or dramatically lower quality of life as the heart is strained to supply oxygen and nutrients throughout the body. 
Researchers from the Minneapolis Heart Institute have presented the results of their research to the American College of Cardiology's 63rd Annual Scientific Session that demonstrates how women who were eating a diet high in fresh fruits and vegetables as young adults were much less likely to have plaque build-up in their arteries 20 years later compared with those who consumed lower amounts of these foods. Prior studies have provided incidental evidence about the importance of eating a diet packed with fresh produce in its natural form, but this research provided documented proof by utilizing Coronary Artery Calcium (CAC) scans that show the percentage of arterial blockage in the heart by measuring vascular calcification. 
Courtesy of Natural News 

Co-op's UK apples in 'more stores than other retailers' bid

Published: 10 Oct 2014

The Co-operative Food is planning to sell Red Tractor-approved British apples in more stores than any other retailer this season. 
Carla Mills, fruit buyer at The Co-operative Food said: "This year's bumper crop of great quality fruit will help us to showcase some of the traditional favourites much loved by our customers. Traditional British varieties such as Discovery, Galmac, Early Windsor, Red Windsor, Spartan, Worcester, Wellant, Cameo, Scrumptious, Egremont Russet, Red Pippin, and Red Falstaff will all be sold in our Co-operative Dessert Apple pack, and will change variety as the season progresses. 
"With their unique flavour and perfumed scent, many of the older British varieties are now hard to come by, and their short season should be celebrated, and enjoyed whilst available. These varieties will join classic favourites Cox and Gala, Braeburn and of course Bramley. 
She added: "We want to show our support to our British apple growers whilst giving customers a great range of British apples and pears to choose from." 
Tesco sold more English apples and pears in 2013-14 than any other retailer, according to an independent industry league table. 
Courtesy of Fresh Produce Journal. 

Coming to a rooftop near you - the urban growing revolution

Published: 3 Oct 2014

Could London, New York and other cities be self-sufficient in fruit and vegetables? Yes, writes Rachel Dring, by converting wasted roof space into gardens and greenhouses. Benefits include reducing waste; raising energy efficiency, sustainability and food security; and healthier, more connected citizens. 
When Tiana Begum and her two teenagers moved into their new home in a 1970's council flat in West London, the landlord didn't just hand over the keys. 
He also gave them the pamphlet for their local veg-box scheme, which delivers fresh produce grown in the rooftop greenhouse above their heads. 
"That's not food miles", Tiana exclaimed, "that's food metres!" 
They get a discount when they volunteer a few hours a week with growing and distributing the food. Tiana also soon discovered their energy bills are 40% cheaper due to the insulating effect of the greenhouse. 
These benefits come with some rules - you must separate your food waste from the rest of your household waste. This is collected weekly and converted to compost for the greenhouse via local anaerobic digesters. 
You also have to share the elevators with the farmers, so lifts littered with leaves or a roll cage full of produce are a regular occurrence. When there's a glut, Tiana helps convert the surplus crops into chutneys and preserves, which she sells online, in the in-house community kitchen. 
Her children are also getting involved. Her daughter, Thameda, who's finishing school soon, has been offered a paid apprenticeship as a horticultural trainee at the greenhouse. 
Her 14-year-old son, Amit, who never used to be keen on eating his greens has changed his tune since helping out with the growing and harvesting: 
"These vegetables actually taste of something. Vegetables used to be so bland but the ones they grow upstairs have so much flavour." 
Courtesy of the Ecologist. For more information please visit their website here. 

Fresh Pod is directly involved with DEFRA

Published: 18 Aug 2014

We are directly involved with DEFRA on the British Food Plan which is a brilliant initiative to drive the sale of British produce in the public sector as well as exports. Our local MP, Elizabeth Truss has recently been made Secretary of State for the Environment and knowing Liz she will be as committed to this plan as she was to her previous role in education. Not a lady to be sidetracked with bureaucracy when she has made a commitment.

Swindon entrepreneur comes up with veggie version of Top Trumps game

Published: 7 Aug 2014

Seven years ago Mike, 32, from Redhouse, had the idea of developing his own version of Top Trumps, which would help youngsters to learn about the importance of fruit and vegetables. 
Now Veggie Trumps is ready to go into print and the marketing manager is collecting funds to produce the first copies of the game. 
Top Trumps is a much-loved game among youngsters where each player is dealt cards with different strengths which they use to try and win the whole set. 
Over the years there have been many categories, ranging from motor cars to mythical creatures. Mike's version will highlight different fruit and vegetables, which he hopes will increase young people's understanding of their healthy properties. 
Each item will be a different character and players will compete on different factors, such as the amount of vitamin C in certain fruit and veg. 
He said: "I was round at a friend's house and his young son didn't know what an avocado was. I grew up in the north of England so we didn't really have exotic fruits then. 
"These days I thought kids knew all about fruit and veg with all the coverage on television but that's not the case. 
"I developed the game on the back of that. It will help to teach children about the produce as well as increasing their social skills. 
"My dream is to see children playing the game or see it on a shelf shop." 
In order to get the idea up and running, Mike has set up a Kick Starter Page where he is hoping to raise £8,000. 
People can pledge differing amounts of money, which will be used to print off copies of Veggie Trumps so Mike can test its popularity. 
He said: "I can use the first copies to send to schools and teachers so I can see how it's received. 
"Every week we get several messages from people wanting to find out more so I am confident it will be a success. 
"If it goes down well the next stage is to look for a distributor. Depending on how much people pledge they get something like a copy of the cards or limited edition character cards. 
"We hit 26 per cent of our target at the weekend with a month still to go so I'm hopeful." 
Courtesy of Fresh Plaza 

Spain: Low prices and sales of late oranges

Published: 3 Jul 2014

The situation of previous weeks is being repeated, with low prices for the late orange varieties, as well as an almost complete halt of sales. For their part, Verna lemons have registered a recovery of both prices and sales volumes. 
Production and sales at orange handling facility  
The significant drop in orange consumption volumes in Europe has been determining in slowing down the pace of work at Andalusia's handling facilities. The low demand has also entailed prices dropping to unprofitable levels.  
In previous campaigns, marketers of the Spanish eastern coast headed to Andalusia to acquire quality late oranges to be able to supply their clients. By contrast, this season, with the low prices and demand, those same operators are backing down, waiting for prices to improve before resuming their operations. 
For more information please visit http://bit.ly/1obOImy 
Courtesy of Fresh Plaza

Heinz to turn tomatoes into plastic

Published: 12 Jun 2014

Tomato brand giant Heinz is partnering with car manufacturer Ford to turn tomato by-product into bio-plastic for use in vehicles. 
The venture will investigate how to use tomato fibres and dry tomato skins to develop materials for vehicle components, such as wiring brackets or storage bins for coins and small objects. 
"We are exploring whether this food processing byproduct makes sense for an automotive application," said Ford's plastics research technical specialist, Ellen Lee. "Our goal is to develop a strong, lightweight material that meets our vehicle requirements, while at the same time reducing our overall environmental impact."  
Heinz said it is looking for ways to recycle peel, stems and seeds from the more than two million tonnes of tomatoes it uses each year. 
Vidhu Nagpal, associate director for packaging R&D at Heinz, said: "Although we are in the very early stages of research, and many questions remain, we are excited about the possibilities this could produce for both Heinz and Ford, and the advancement of sustainable 100 per cent plant-based plastics." 
Courtesy of Fresh Produce Journal 

Brassicas backed by European Union funding

Published: 7 Jun 2014

The Brassica Growers Association (BGA) is the only UK organisation to receive funding from a European Union budget of €23 million for the promotion of agricultural products in the EU and third countries.  
It is one of 20 programmes granted the exclusive funding, which will be used to continue running the successful Love Your Greens campaign - the consumer facing educational campaign promoting Brassica crops. 
The announcement follows on from the BGA securing HDC (Horticulture Development Company) funding last year in order to support the three-year programme targeting parents and children. The additional money will also allow for an expansion of the campaign. Initial funding came from contributions made by members of the BGA, which was matched by the HDC, and further fund-matched by the EU. 
The funding application and campaign; developed by Marketing Agency The Little Big Voice, is now reaching the end of its first year, with achievements including the launch of a brand new website and media partnerships targeting parents and children. Activities planned for the second year of the campaign include the distribution of tens of thousands of free seed packs to schools, community projects and families in order to educate children on the origins of their food. There will also be a recipe book for students.  
Matthew Rawson, Chairman of the Brassica Growers Association, commented: 
"We're thrilled to have been selected to receive this additional funding from the European Union, particularly as we were the only successful UK bid. The scheme applies to all agriculture and horticulture sectors, not just fresh produce, so we're very lucky to have been selected as one of the beneficiaries. 
The Love Your Greens campaign has seen an incredible response and we're really pleased with the impact it has had so far. We aim to make it bigger and better over the next two years, with a really exciting programme of activities still to come." 
Courtesy of Fresh Plaza 

Tomatoes are France's second most consumed product

Published: 2 Jun 2014

Small, big, round, oblong…there are 10,000 varieties of tomato, but only a few of them are marketed. In France the choice is restricted and often far from what the consumer would like.  
Today 80% of tomatoes are produced out of ground and the criticisms can be severe. The sudden arrival of older varieties has marked certain producers who are now more interested in the flavour. These varieties are fragile and were rare in supermarkets, but due to demand, producers and supermarkets have adapted these old tomatoes for large retail.  
With 12kg/capita/year, tomatoes are France's second most consumed product after potatoes. 
Courtesy of Fresh Plaza 

South African fruit exports set to fall

Published: 22 May 2014

Following a record season last year, the volume of apples, pears and grapes exported by South Africa in 2014 is expected to decrease by 16 per cent, 10 per cent and 7 per cent respectively, according to a new report published by the USDA. 
And with residual stocks said to be high in Europe, the country's fruit exports would be subject to tougher market conditions in 2014, the agency said. 
"According to industry sources, there is growing focus to diversify South African exports to other markets especially, Africa, Middle East and Asian markets, which are believed to have less stringent import standards than Europe," the report stated, adding that production of all three deciduous crops would remain flat this season as the rising costs of production and orchard and vineyard establishment constrained growth in planted area. 
Unseasonal hail and rainfall had also damaged apple and pear production in late November 2013, the report confirmed, pushing a certain proportion of the crop to the domestic market or processing. 
"Exceptionally good weather and growing conditions were experienced in the 2013 marketing year," it concluded. "This resulted in record production of apples, pears and grapes, the highest since 2003." 
Apple and pear production both increased by 9 per cent last year, while grape output was up 5 per cent on the 2012 figure. 
Europe still remains the traditional market for South African apples, the USDA said, taking 38 per cent of total exports last season. 
The equivalent figure for pears was almost double at 70 per cent of total exports, and even higher for grapes at 79 per cent. 
South African apple exports to Zimbabwe are set to stop following the immediate ban of fresh fruits and vegetables by the Zimbabwean government in April 2014. 
While South Africa is a net exporter of apples, pears and grapes, there is a gap for niche fruit imports, especially the larger sized apples, and higher quality grapes. 
Courtesy of FruitNet 

European brown rot spore levels are high in tart cherry orchards

Published: 20 May 2014

After examining European brown rot strikes from tart cherry tree samples in northwest Michigan, extensive sporulation was observed, particularly at the base of dead flowers infected last year. Initiate control sprays at popcorn this year. 
Courtesy of Fruit Growers News 

Goatham will double top fruit production

Published: 14 May 2014

Top fruit grower AC Goatham will double annual production of apples and pears by planting almost 300,000 new fruit trees at Flanders Farm, Kent. 
The move, part of the company's new 20-year 'Strategic Vision', is expected to more than double its Gross Value Added (GVA) from £12million to £28m. 
Over the next two years the firm, which has a direct sourcing deal with Sainsbury's, will plant 268,500 new trees, including 112,000 trees that will recreate orchards that were removed after WW2. This will take the total number of trees planted to just under two million. 
"Providing a secure fruit supply for customers across the UK is essential, and potentially there are new markets for British top fruit overseas," said partner Ross Goatham. "Over the next 40 years, the world needs to produce more food than it has over the last 10,000. As farmers, we have to be thinking long term and thinking ahead to how we will meet the future demand for food." 
Goatham added: "We need people to understand how we are competing in a global marketplace and support British farmers, whatever the sector of farming they are in. Climate change, food security and economic stability are all issues we will feel in Kent and planning ahead now will ensure a long term future for our business." 
A company statement suggested the investment will benefit the local economy through the potential to "preserve and grow jobs". The firm currently employs 230 full time staff and has 300 seasonal workers. 
Over the last seven years, AC Goatham has invested £30m in growing the business, including £10m on its storage and packing facility, and offices for business operations at Medway-based Flanders Farm, Kent.  
Courtesy of Fresh Produce Journal 

Spain: "Export cherry campaign underway with larger calibres"

Published: 8 May 2014

On 22 April, four days in advance compared to last season, the Catalan company SAT Bepa, based in Seròs, harvested Lleida's earliest cherries on its plantations of Baix Segre, where fewer kilos and larger calibres are expected compared to last year.  
"This year, due to certain anomalies in the pollination, we expect a drop in production volumes of around 10%. The effects have been felt especially with the earliest varieties, so until the mid-campaign, volumes will not recover," states the manager of SAT Bepa, Francesc Pena, adding that "it will be a campaign with a lack of smaller calibres, since the most common will be the 28, 30 and 32". 
As for prices, Francesc points out that in the beginning they are still 20% lower than last year. "However, this could be positive, because now there are more segments of the population consuming cherries, which will ensure that the current prices, despite being lower, will remain stable for longer."  
Although it will still take another seven days before there are significant volumes of cherries in the markets, this week the harvest of the Stone Sweet, Grace Star, Folfer and Sunmit varieties, which are all intended for export, has started. These are harder and with higher sugar levels, thus catering to all markets depending on consumer preferences.  
Under the brands Olimpfruit and Afrodita, the company sells 90% of its cherries in export markets, mainly in France, Belgium, the Netherlands, the UK, Germany and Russia. 
"Two years ago, we tested air shipments to Panama and Brazil, although such lines of work are still complicated. We believe that Europe offers interesting niche markets in which fruit with an above-average differentiated value is demanded, with some retail chains in the UK requiring a minimum of 16° Brix, which not everyone can achieve. Similarly, Dutch and Belgian supermarkets demand dark-coloured fruit, as consumers associate the colour with the flavour," explains Francesc. 
"Our philosophy is to offer a fruit that not only serves as a dessert or as a healthy food, but as a flavour experience, and we achieve this mostly by shipping fruit to its destination the same day that it is harvested. Furthermore, we strive to minimise the potassium nitrate concentration in the soils, as it has a negative impact on the fruit's hardness." 
"If the weather in Europe from now on remains warm and dry, we expect to have a positive campaign," concludes Francesc Pena. 
Courtesy of Fresh Plaza  

UK sales up 20% for beetroot in four years following superfood claims

Published: 4 May 2014

Following decades of decline, beetroot sales are rising sharply and farmers have had to dramatically increase their planting to meet demand. It has even achieved superfood status, after scientists claimed beetroot juice is capable of boosting athletic performance and can help treat high blood pressure. 
Retail analysts Kantar suggest total sales of the vegetable are up by 20 percent in four years, while Tesco reports sales of beetroot juice have surged by 50 percent in just one year. 
Tesco beetroot buyer Ravi Patel: 'For years younger customers associated beetroot with the pickled variety that was enjoyed by their grandparents but all that has changed now. These days beetroot has become known as a super food and its popularity has grown to record levels in the last four years. There has been a lot of publicity about its health benefits, especially in helping to lower blood pressure and this has helped boost demand. Perhaps the greatest coup of all has been crafty parents getting their children to like it by juicing it and adding it into delicious fruit and vegetable smoothies.' 
On the back of the current sales surge more beetroot growers who have never previously grown the vegetable before are now planning to grow it. 
The UK's biggest producers, Gs, based in Ely, Cambridgeshire, have increased production by 50 per cent in the last five years and is selling more than 47 million packs of the vegetable in raw or shredded form a year. The firm is also making a major move into selling beetroot juice as a sports drink following scientific evidence of improved performance among athletes. 
Beetroot is a good source of iron and folate or folic acid, while it also contains nitrates, betalaine, magnesium and other antioxidants, which are important in preventing cancer. It is particularly rich in nitrates, which is converted to nitric oxide in the body and is understood to lead to a modest reduction in blood pressure. 
Research published last year found the high nitrate levels in beetroot juice resulted in 'moderate improvements' in exercise performance, while a 2010 study suggested the juice may increase blood flow to certain areas of the brain. 
Courtesy of Fresh Plaza 

Does organic food reduce cancer risk?

Published: 21 Apr 2014

A widely publicised study has suggested that eating organic food doesn't stop you getting cancer. Pat Thomas finds the study deeply unconvincing - and wonders why Cancer Research UK is so quick to trumpet its conclusions. 
Both sides of the debate are scrambling to make their soundbites seem more sensible than the other guys' - and for reasons known only to newspaper photo editors, pictures of Gwyneth Paltrow are being used to illustrate the 'typical' organic eater. 
Get ready folks, the circus has come to town. 
In slightly more than a soundbite here is my take. 
The study, by scientists from Oxford University, used data from a larger study called the Million Women Study. Around 623,000 women aged 50 or over were asked via questionnaire whether they ate organic foods. These women were then followed over a 9-year period to see who developed any of the most common types of cancer. 
The researchers say they found no difference in overall cancer risk between those who never ate organic and those who usually or always did. 
Several things occur to me ... 
Very few women in the study actually ate a fully organic diet. Indeed at the beginning of the study the scientists determined that 30% (180,000), 63% (224,000) and 7% (45,000) fell into never, sometimes, or usually / always eating organic food categories, respectively. 
Thus the number of women who ate organic food was very small and food questionnaires are a notoriously inaccurate way of understanding how people eat. 
A 2010 report by commissioned by the charity Cancer Research UK, which also commissioned this study, estimated that 43% of new cancers were due to largely preventable dietary and lifestyle factors. That means that 60% of cancers are due to something else. 
Even if you were to accept that the genetic contribution to cancer was as high as 20% (I don't) that still means that 40% of cancers are caused by something else, which diet alone is unlikely to address. 
Nutritional composition matters too 
The nutritional composition of the women's diets is as important as whether they were organic or not. It would be interesting to know how the researchers defined organic food - was it fresh or processed? 
A diet of organic doughnuts, crisps and sodas is unlikely to be protective (though that's a fight for another day). 
Cancer is a slow developing disease. This makes it very difficult to study its causes. The nine years of the study is probably not long enough to show any significant differences between groups, especially for some of the cancers studied, some of which, in the grand scheme of things, are still relatively rare. 
Early shorter-term studies of mammographies, for example, were once used to suggest that they reduced the risk of death from breast cancer. But a 25-year study published this year has shown this was not the case. 
The researchers say that an organic diet did not prevent cancer, but in this study it was associated with a 21% decrease in the risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma - which should probably not be dismissed as "chance", as has been done. 
Why put the study behind a paywall? 
If the researchers are so sure of their findings why didn't they make them 'open access' so that everyone could read - and immediately, intelligently comment on them? The reason, I would suggest, is that they want to make headlines on their basically crappy (that's the scientific term) study, before anyone can tear it apart. 
No single dietary intervention can protect you from disease or early death. This includes vegetarianism which has been shown to reduce, but not prevent, the incidence of and early death from a whole range of diseases including cerebrovascular disease and various cancers. 
Eating organic, apart from its multitude of other health and environmental benefits, still remains one of the best ways to avoid pesticide residues in your food (levels of which are rising). 
Avoiding pesticide residues is a sensible health precaution because the link between pesticide exposure and cancer is well established. 
CRUK - not impressed by organic food 
Depressing, then, to read Dr Claire Knight, from Cancer Research UK, quip that: "This study adds to the evidence that eating organically grown food doesn't lower your overall cancer risk. But if you're anxious about pesticide residues on fruit and vegetables, it's a good idea to wash them before eating." 
Pesticides are present in many foods and most can't be simply 'washed away' - otherwise they would not work in the fields. They stay on plants and in our bodies for a long time. 
What is more you can't wash foods such as flour, cereals and bread. As our friends at the Soil Association replied: "we'd be interested to know how she expects consumers to wash loaves of bread." 
The Million Women Study has generated a lot of data including such gems as whether having a cat gives you cancer, whether taking a nap means you have cancer and whether having babies and breastfeeding makes you fat which will probably give you cancer. 
I'm only partly joking. These are real studies. The point is, dismissing organic food in the same soundbite way is shallow, ridiculous and may even, in the long-term, prove terribly misleading. 
Courtesy of The Ecologist 

Latest food technology -

Published: 17 Apr 2014

Keeping fruit and vegetables fresh, crispy and tasty, whilst providing a menu with choice and reacting to demand, can challenge the most organised of chefs.  
The reason fresh produce ripens so quickly, particularly in mixed store rooms is because of the ethylene in the atmosphere, which fresh produce gives off naturally as they ripen. Compass Group UK & Ireland has introduced Fresh Pod technology into their supply chain to safe guard freshness and stop deterioration in its tracks.  
Compass moves produce very quickly around its business units and its sophisticated ordering system for its catering division means fresh produce does not hang around for long. However, the introduction of Fresh Pod technology ensures that whist produce awaits preparation it is stored in a clean air environment keeping it crispy, tasty and retaining nutrients until ready to use.  
Ethylene control is a new concept recently introduced to the catering industry in the UK. Compass Group invited the Fresh Pod team to pitch the product through their innovative, dragon den style "Ideas Work" process, aimed at giving new products and services the chance to get their business in front of influential judges from Compass and other organisations.  
Fresh Pod technology is completely safe and natural and approved for use with organics. Aside from absorbing 99% of the ethylene in the surrounding areas, it also removes airborne spores, rots and moulds from the atmosphere which can also contribute to early decay. Fresh Pod works to protect fresh produce across the entire food chain from growers to the end consumer.  
Nick Vadis, Executive Chef, at Compass Group UK & Ireland says, "Reducing food waste is really important to us and Fresh Pod represents an innovative and effortless way to support our continuing efforts in this area." 
Valerie Watson-Brown, a Director at Fresh Pod "I applaud Compass' tackling of food waste across many of its business units. The environmental impact of food is unacceptable and unsustainable. If more companies in hospitality and the catering industry adopted similar policies on waste and food preservation then not only will savings be made, but the benefits to the environment will be tenfold."  
Further information on Fresh Pod can be found at www.freshpod.co.uk.

UK: Fresh Pod technology keeping food fresh in the catering industry

Published: 14 Apr 2014

Keeping fruit and vegetables fresh, crispy and tasty, whilst providing a menu with choice and reacting to demand, can challenge the most organised of chefs. The reason fresh produce ripens so quickly, particularly in mixed store rooms is because of the ethylene in the atmosphere, which fresh produce gives off naturally as they ripen. Compass Group UK & Ireland has introduced Fresh Pod technology into their supply chain to safe guard freshness and stop deterioration in its tracks.  
Compass moves produce very quickly around its business units and its sophisticated ordering system for its catering division means fresh produce does not hang around for long. However, the introduction of Fresh Pod technology ensures that whist produce awaits preparation it is stored in a clean air environment keeping it crispy, tasty and retaining nutrients until ready to use. 
Ethylene control is a new concept recently introduced to the catering industry in the UK. Compass Group invited the Fresh Pod team to pitch the product through their innovative, dragon den style "Ideas Work" process, aimed at giving new products and services the chance to get their business in front of influential judges from Compass and other organisations.  
Fresh Pod technology is completely safe and natural and approved for use with organics. Aside from absorbing 99% of the ethylene in the surrounding areas, it also removes airborne spores, rots and moulds from the atmosphere which can also contribute to early decay. Fresh Pod works to protect fresh produce across the entire food chain from growers to the end consumer.  
Nick Vadis, Executive Chef, at Compass Group UK & Ireland says, "Reducing food waste is really important to us and Fresh Pod represents an innovative and effortless way to support our continuing efforts in this area." 
Fresh Plaza: http://www.freshplaza.com/article/119809/UK-Fresh-Pod-technology-keeping-food-fresh-in-the-catering-industry

Compass invests in ripening control

Published: 11 Apr 2014

Foodservice giant Compass has signed a deal with ethylene control technology company Fresh Pod to better manage its fresh produce supply chain. 
The catering firm said it has invested in the technology, which removes the ripening hormone ethylene from produce and extends shelf life, because produce is moved around quickly through its ordering system and catering division. 
It said the ethylene control is growing in popularity in the catering industry, and Fresh Pod technology removes 99 per cent of the hormone from air surrounding produce. 
Compass' executive chef Nick Vadis said: "Reducing food waste is really important to us and Fresh Pod represents an innovative and effortless way to support our continuing efforts in this area." 
Fresh Pod won the deal after a Dragon's Den style 'Ideas Work' process, aimed at giving new products and services to pitch concepts to heads of companies such as Compass. 
Its website states that Fresh Pod products can extend the life of fruit and vegetables by up to four times. 
The company also claims to be the sole distributor of ethylene control products in the UK. Its technology can be used in individual fresh produce packs, cold storage systems or shipping and retail storage. 
Valerie Watson-Brown, a director at Fresh Pod, said: "If more companies in hospitality and the catering industry adopted similar policies on waste and food preservation then not only will savings be made, but the benefits to the environment will be tenfold." 
Fresh Produce Journal: http://www.fruitnet.com/fpj/article/161222/compass-invests-in-ripening-control?utm_source=Channel+ports+in+major+tie-up%3B+Tozer+invests+in+warehouse%3B+Compass+chooses+Fresh+Pod+technology&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Channel+ports+in+major+tie-up%3B+Tozer+invests+in+warehouse%3B+Compass+chooses+Fresh+Pod+technology

The cafe where the food really is rubbish: Restaurant which only uses waste food to create meals..

Published: 8 Apr 2014

A cafe that uses leftover food thrown out by restaurants and supermarkets to create meals has opened its doors. 
The Real Junkfood Project in Leeds, West Yorkshire, only serves meals created from food destined for landfill.  
Numerous restaurants, supermarkets and cafes in the city have now got behind the scheme and donate food on a daily basis after they were approached by project leaders. 
Volunteers collect the unwanted food and turn it into their own meals - which vary each day but normally include a meat and vegetarian option, sandwiches and sometimes a dessert. 
Unwanted food donated so far ranges from bread and broccoli to caviar, truffles, a kilo of smoked salmon, luxury cheeses, extravagant veg and spices. 
Customers at the radical restaurant, thought to be the first in the country, then pay what they want for the food. 
The cafe was founded by chef Adam Smith - who opened the cafe in December. 
Since then, he has been joined by five more directors plus an army of volunteers, with 50 signing up last week alone. 
The cafe is now open five days a week to serve breakfast and dinner. It has also started catering for outside events. 
Mr Smith believes by February this year his cafe could have saved a tonne of food from going to waste. 
One of the cafe's Directors Connor Walsh, 23, said: 'We get a real mix here from locals in the areas, who come in a spend the day here to students. 
'We are very busy and are probably doing between 15 to 30 meals a day. 
'The pay as you feel concept makes people think about what is offer and what they think it is worth. 
'We like to think if somebody has a little more money they might pay a little more. 
'But if a person did not have the means to pay we are not going to not serve them, if they are hungry we are going to give them food. 
'Sometimes if customers don't have money they will help out for a couple of hours, invest some of their time.' 
Connor said they are now operating a food bank from the premises as well. 
He added: 'We want to make use of all this food that is being needlessly wasted over society. 
'We want to provide healthy meals for people who are food insecure. Using food collected that basically gets sent to landfill.' 
Connor said he hoped to see similar cafes around the country and 'feed more people and raise awareness of food waste'. 
Co-director Edd Colbert, 23, is juggling the cafe with his degree in international development - specialising in the politics of food. 
He said 'pay as you feel' is a means of bridging the barrier between producers and consumers. 
He said: 'You have someone who pays 50p for a sandwich, sitting next to someone who pays £10 or someone who can't afford a bag of crisps in any other establishment and eats for free. 
'Waste of any kind - whether food or energy - is really an immoral situation to be in.' 
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2598755/The-cafe-food-really-rubbish-Restaurant-uses-waste-food-create-meals-opens-doors-customers-pay-want-dinner.html#ixzz2yHZCkDjG  
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Supermarket 'Bogof' deals criticised over food waste

Published: 7 Apr 2014

Supermarkets have been urged to end "buy one get one free" (Bogof) deals to cut the "morally repugnant" amount of food being thrown away by shoppers. 
A report by the House of Lords European Union Committee says 15m tonnes of food is wasted in the UK each year. 
Retailers are also told to behave more responsibly with farmers and avoid cancelling orders at the last minute. 
However, the British Retail Consortium said the report "had not appreciated what is already happening". 
In the report, the peers also criticised the EU's "fragmented and untargeted" attempts to tackle the problem. 
More surplus food should be passed to charities and food banks, the committee said. 
'Huge issue' 
The report said retailers were able to "pass on" food waste "from the store to the household" by the use of special offers such as "buy one get one free". 
"It is clear that retailers must assume a far greater responsibility for the prevention of food waste in the home", it said. 
Continue reading the main story 

Start Quote 
You've got this crazy system where some of the food is being given away and then often ends up getting wasted and the rest of the food is far too expensive" 
Oxfam's head of policy Mark Lawson 
Committee chairwoman Baroness Scott of Needham Market said food waste was "clearly a huge issue" in the UK and Europe. 
She said: "Not only is it morally repugnant, but it has serious economic and environmental implications. 
"The fact that 90m tonnes of food is wasted across the EU each year shows the extent of the problem and explains why we are calling for urgent action." 
Their demands include a five-year plan by the European Commission to reduce waste across the EU. 
The amount of food discarded by consumers in industrialised nations is equivalent to nearly the entire level of net food production of sub-Saharan Africa, the committee said. 
'Crazy system' 
Its report said more education was needed for consumers after peers were told only 37% of people knew the difference between "best before" and "use by" dates on food packaging. 
Food can still be sold after its best-before date, while a use-by date is used on "highly perishable" products likely to become dangerous after a short period of time. 
Lady Scott added: "There is also much that can be done domestically, and in particular by the big retailers, to reduce food waste. 
"We are urging the supermarkets to look again at offers such as 'buy one get one free', which can encourage excess consumption which leads to food waste." 
Oxfam's head of policy Mark Lawson suggested that the supermarkets' pricing policy was a big part of the problem. 
"You've got this crazy system where some of the food is being given away and then often ends up getting wasted and the rest of the food is far too expensive," he told BBC 5 live. 
The report also expressed "concern" about a cut to government funding supporting the work of the UK's Waste and Resources Action Programme (Wrap). 
"There is a high risk of false economy if the cuts to Wrap's funding to support food waste prevention ultimately lead to resource inefficiency in terms of economic costs to businesses and households," it said. 
Retail expert John Pal said the big four supermarkets were losing customers because of their complicated deals. 
"What we are seeing is a bit of a change in consumers' purchasing patterns. They are getting a little bit fed up with this and we are seeing a shift from the big four supermarkets with the consumers voting with their feet and going to the Aldis and the Lidls," he said. 
In response to the report, the British Retail Consortium said: "The government's own research body has concluded there is no evidence that promotions increase food waste. 
"It is also worth remembering all major retailers are working to challenging government targets to cut food waste. 
"Cutting food waste is a key sustainability issue but we need to focus on evidence based policy rather than being distracted by perception." 
Courtesy of the BBC: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-26908613

Consumers should be encouraged to consume more plant-based food to improve their nutritional health

Published: 2 Apr 2014

A carrot a day … Consumers should be encouraged to eat more plant-based food, says a leading nutritionalist. 
"For me, the challenge is establishing a more sustainable and nutritious food supply chain for the UK," said Professor Judy Buttriss, director general of the British Nutrition Foundation at a recent Leatherhead Food Research conference on nutrition. 
The government's former chief scientific adviser, Professor Sir John Beddington, had highlighted the developing world's increased demand for nutrient-rich diets, she said, adding: "There are some huge decisions that have to be made. We are not self-sufficient in food in the UK and we are bringing in a lot from other parts of the world." 
Increasing evidence  
Promoting plant-based diets could be one way for the UK to secure its food supply chain, since there was increasing evidence that such a diet could provide the nutrients consumers needed. 
The National Health Service's 'eatwell' plate recommended a diet consisting of two thirds from plants, she noted. There was considerable potential to improve the amount of plant-based ingredients in the nationvs diet, given that recent data from the Office of National Statistics showed 1.2M people in the UK already considered themselves vegetarian. 
Research from food trends agency The Food People predicted that the figure would rise by 50% over the next two years. 
Bigger challenge  
Britain's obesity problems meant that consumers needed to reduce the amount of energy-dense foods in their diets, said Buttriss. "For all of us in nutrition, the bigger challenge is trying to encourage people to have diets that are less energy dense, so that they can consume more food to take in more [essential] nutrients [that are lacking]," she added. 
Manufacturers had an important role to play in reformulating foods to make them healthier, Buttriss added. "Effective behaviour change is the goal and a lot in the food industry have a part to play in that." 
Courtesy of the Food Manufacturer.

Climate change 'already affecting food supply' - UN

Published: 31 Mar 2014

Climate change has already cut into the global food supply and is fuelling wars and natural disasters, but governments are unprepared to protect those most at risk, according to a report from the UN's climate science panel. 
The report is the first update in seven years from the UN's international panel of experts, which is charged with producing the definitive account of climate change. 
In that time, climate change has ceased to be a distant threat and made an impact much closer to home, the report's authors say. "It's about people now," said Virginia Burkett, the chief scientist for global change at the US geological survey and one of the report's authors. "It's more relevant to the man on the street. It's more relevant to communities because the impacts are directly affecting people - not just butterflies and sea ice." 
The scientists of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change found evidence of climate change far beyond thawing Arctic permafrost and crumbling coral reefs - "on all continents and across the oceans". 
But it was the finding that climate change could threaten global food security that caught the attention of government officials from 115 countries who reviewed the report. "All aspects of food security are potentially affected by climate change," the report said. 
The scientists said there was enough evidence to say for certain that climate change is affecting food production on land and sea. 
The rate of increase in crop yields is slowing - especially in wheat - raising doubts as to whether food production will keep up with the demand of a growing population. Changes in temperature and rainfall patterns could lead to food price rises of between 3% and 84% by 2050. 
"Climate change is acting as a brake. We need yields to grow to meet growing demand, but already climate change is slowing those yields," said Michael Oppenheimer, a Princeton professor and an author of the report. 
Other food sources are also under threat. Fish catches in some areas of the tropics are projected to fall by between 40% and 60%, according to the report. 
The report also connected climate change to rising food prices and political instability, for instance the riots in Asia and Africa after food price shocks in 2008. 
"The impacts are already evident in many places in the world. It is not something that is [only] going to happen in the future," said David Lobell, a professor at Stanford University's centre for food security, who devised the models. 
"Almost everywhere you see the warming effects have a negative affect on wheat and there is a similar story for corn as well. These are not yet enormous effects but they show clearly that the trends are big enough to be important," Lobell said. 
Wheat is the first big staple crop to be affected by climate change, because it is sensitive to heat and is grown around the world, from Pakistan to Russia to Canada. Projections suggest that wheat yields could drop 2% a decade. 
The report explored a range of scenarios involving a temperature rise of two degrees or more that saw dramatic declines in production in the coming decades. Declines in crop yields will register first in drier and warmer parts of the world but as temperatures rise two, three or four degrees, they will affect everyone. 
In the more extreme scenarios, heat and water stress could reduce yields by 25% between 2030 and 2049. 
The report acknowledged that there were a few isolated areas where a longer growing season had been good for farming. But it played down the idea that there may be advantages to climate change as far as food production is concerned. 
Overall, the report said, "Negative impacts of climate change on crop yields have been more common than positive impacts." Scientists and campaigners pointed to the finding as a defining feature of the report. 
The scientists also detected climate having an effect on heatwaves, droughts and flooding across the globe, and warned that those events would take a disproportionate toll on poor, weak and elderly people. The scientists said governments did not have systems in place to protect those populations. Warming of more than two degrees would increase the risks of "severe, pervasive and irreversible" consequences, the report said. 
The report also warned for the first time that climate change, combined with poverty and economic shocks, could lead to war and drive people to leave their homes. "Climate change can indirectly increase risks of violent conflicts," the report said. It also warned that hundreds of millions of people in south Asia and south-east Asia will be affected by coastal flooding and land loss by 2100. 
"The main way that most people will experience climate change is through the impact on food: the food they eat, the price they pay for it, and the availability and choice that they have," said Tim Gore, head of food policy and climate change for Oxfam. 
Friends of the Earth's executive director, Andy Atkins, said: "We can't continue to ignore the stark warnings of the catastrophic consequences of climate change on the lives and livelihoods of people across the planet. 
"Giant strides are urgently needed to tackle the challenges we face, but all we get is tiny steps, excuses and delays from most of the politicians that are supposed to represent our interests. 
"Governments across the world must stand up to the oil, gas and coal industries, and take their foot of the fossil fuel accelerator that's speeding us towards a climate disaster." 
Courtesy of The Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/mar/31/climate-change-food-supply-un

Restaurants turning to high-tech solutions to save money and waste.

Published: 29 Mar 2014

What next - a talking bin? We sent restaurant expert Joe Warwick to rummage through the garbage in a quest to find out what our restaurants are doing with their food waste. 
From behind the kitchen door it sounded as if something had been kicked over. Pans were crashing, plates were smashing and utensils flying. Expletives - lots of them strung together like brutal poetry - were most definitely flying. I was meeting a chef friend for a mid-morning coffee at his restaurant and tried to ignore the ruckus as I waited in the empty dining room. Silence finally fell, and he appeared, his cheeks still flushed. "Sorry about that," he said, sadness and anger in his big French eyes, "I found a potato in the bin." 
The best chefs tend to be fanatical about food waste. It's drilled into them throughout their training. To throw away food unnecessarily is to throw away money. Maintaining a good GP (gross profit) is both a badge of honour and a professional necessity. Restaurants survive on their profit margins and - if it's not their own businesses - head chefs are often incentivised with bonuses based on their kitchen costs. Food is the second biggest cost to a restaurant after labour and unnecessary food waste is bad for business. A clever chef knows how to get the best out of trimmings, scraps and the bits and pieces that a more careless cook might throw away.  
Yet, despite this, an estimated 920,000 tons of food waste is thrown out by the UK hospitality industry each year, an estimated 75% of which is avoidable, according to government figures. That's the equivalent of £1.7bn worth of good food being wasted by restaurants and food service operations. It's wasted food, but also wasted money - and now the hospitality industry is searching for ways to reduce their waste. Last November a pilot scheme called FoodSave was launched, funded by the Mayor of London in partnership with the European Regional Development Fund and the London Waste and Recycling Board. For the restaurants who are taking part in the scheme with the help of the Sustainable Restaurant Association, that means installing a waste auditing system right in their very kitchen. 
Statistics from WRAP suggest that on average 21% of food waste in restaurants arises from spoilage, 45% from food preparation and 34% from food that comes back on punters' plates. The Winnow system has a calibrated steel bin that weighs whatever food is put in it. It's connected to a touchscreen display with everything that gets thrown away initially categorised as lost either to 'inventory or spoilage damage', 'trimmings', 'cooking error', 'prepared not served' or 'plate waste'. There is then a second level of categorisation such as 'breads', 'dairy', 'fruit and veg', 'fish' and 'meat'. The software is customisable to each business - you could have different types and cuts of meat for instance, and a monetary value given to each category. In the case of 'bones and shells' that's nothing but they're still weighed so that the business can see how much their disposal is costing. 
Stocktaking food waste doesn't sound particularly sexy, but if the enthusiasm of the system's early adopters is any indication, it's a very useful bit of kit. During the four-week trial, the first week is used to establish a baseline for the establishment in question, with any data collected then used to implement changes in the following weeks. That could mean changing food ordering patterns or reducing portion sizes. 
Even in restaurants that pride themselves in having low levels of food waste, it can produce results. Sam's Brasserie in Chiswick, already rated by the SRA as having a best-in-class kitchen efficiency, undertook the trial and managed to reduce their food waste by a further 30%, an equivalent saving of £5000 over the course of the year. 
I went to have a look at it in action during a lunch service at Fino on Charlotte Street. It's installed in the pot wash where all dishes are usually scraped and the kitchen porter is based. The touchtone screen is intuitive and much easier to get your head around than the average smartphone. 
"We didn't want them to think that it was a witch hunt where we were going to come in and point fingers," explains Fino proprietor, Eddie Hart of the decision to get involved in the trial. "We just thought that it was something interesting that we could do with the team so that we could learn." 
There was initial scepticism about how the system would work in the heat of a busy service. "Everyone is happy now," says the Fino group's chef Nieves Barragán Mohacho. "But they were all freaking out to begin with that it was going to make service difficult. But now that everyone knows what they are doing, it's easy." There is a shortcut button on the display that simplifies the categorisation process if the plates really start to pile up in the pot wash. 
"What sometimes is a bit of a problem is that all the food waste has to go in the same bin," say the SRA's Victoria Moorhouse, who is helping businesses implement the scheme. "Front of house plate waste has to go into the same bin as kitchen waste and that can sometimes be a challenge. We need them to stream everything together which can be a challenge both because of logistics and changing staff behaviour - you're asking them to change a way of working that has become ingrained and that takes effort." 
Over at The Shed in Notting Hill, they got on so well with the system over their trial that they went out and bought it. For restaurants that participate in FoodSave, the kit costs £1650 to install and then there's a £75 monthly fee. "We did very well in the trial period, we were well below the benchmark in terms of our food waste," explains Alex Winch, sustainability manager for The Shed. "But we just wanted to get involved with a scheme like this right at the beginning." 
The Shed are working with Winnow Solutions to development the software further. "At the moment the machine is simply a recording device, it won't actually help us reduce waste. We need to find ways to do that. One thing we've been discussing is somehow installing into the system ideas of how to use that unnecessary waste. So, for example, if you're throwing out orange peel, the display could prompt you to make marmalade. The SRA has database full of alternative uses for food waste, it would be interesting to tap into that and see what happens." 
The talking kitchen bin might be on its way. Let's just hope some angry chef doesn't give it a kicking when it finally arrives. 
Courtesy of The Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2014/mar/28/restaurants-food-waste-technology

Local hotel praised for green cost-saving performance

Published: 26 Mar 2014

An award-winning hotel in Swaffham has saved more than £16,000 by reducing food and packaging waste. 
Strattons Hotel has achieved its green vision with the help of the government's 'Business is GREAT' campaign (www.greatbusiness.gov.uk) which offers information and support for people looking to start and grow a small business. 
The family business, run by Vanessa and Les Scott with their daughter Hannah and her husband Dominic Hughes, has increased its recycling to an impressive 98 per cent. 
The green hotel now recycles the majority of its waste stream and water through a range of systems including the use of sunken tanks to collect surface water, composting and setting up agreements with new suppliers to ensure that all waste is recycled at source. 
Strattons enforces the recycling ethos throughout the businesses, with all 25 members of staff going through a recycling induction when they join, learning how to sort different materials and understanding what types of waste can be recycled. 
The hotel has been working closely with the government-backed non-profit organisation WRAP (www.wrap.org.uk) to optimise their recycling processes. 
WRAP provides free and practical advice to help businesses, local authorities, communities and individuals reap the benefits of reducing waste, developing sustainable products and using resources in an efficient way. 
Established in 2000, it has funding from a variety of sources including Defra (Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs). 
Vanessa Scott, who is the executive chef of the hotel and works on their green policy, said: "There is a surprising amount of government help out there for small businesses and it's well worth asking about. WRAP helped my business to reduce waste and recycle more, making better use of resources and helping to tackle climate change while improving our bottom line. 
"As a tourism business it makes perfect sense to improve environmental performance because successful tourism relies on great environments. 
"We are supporting the Business is GREAT campaign to highlight our story to other SME employers looking to grow and show the support available to help them fulfil this ambition." 
Matthew Hancock, minister for skills and enterprise, said: "Small businesses are crucial to the success of our economy, which is why we are showcasing the best of British business through our Business is GREAT campaign. We want people in Norfolk to know about the support that the Government is providing to make it easier to start and grow a small business." 
Courtesy of the EDP: http://bit.ly/1m6o2mL

RPC Joins Save Food Initiative

Published: 25 Mar 2014

The leading rigid plastic packaging manufacturer, RPC Group, has joined the SAVE FOOD initiative, a joint campaign organised by the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations and Messe Düsseldorf GmbH to highlight and fight global food loss and waste. 
The initiative now has over 100 members from throughout the food supply chain who, through networking events and ongoing dialogue and discussion, aim to develop solutions to tackle the problems of food waste. Each year, worldwide, a third of all food is thrown away or lost, while at the same time around 842 million people are suffering from hunger. 
SAVE FOOD was launched at Interpack 2011 and since the beginning of 2013 has also enjoyed the support of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). To coincide with this year's Interpack in Düsseldorf, a SAVE FOOD Congress will again take place on 7th and 8th May, bringing together experts from industry, the political sphere and civil society. 
RPC says the initiative ideally complements and supports the company's own comprehensive sustainability programme. 
"According to Incpen, food wastage in developing countries can be as high as 50%; whereas in the UK only 3% goes to waste before it reaches the shops," comments Katherine Fleet, RPC's Group Sustainability Manager.  
"This fact demonstrates both the challenges involved in reducing food waste as well as the crucial role that packaging can play in achieving this. And this is equally important in developed countries since, as the WRAP 'Love Food, Hate Waste' campaign reports, of the 7 million tonnes of food and drink thrown away from UK homes every year, more than half could have been eaten. 
"At RPC we are committed to developing a range of sustainable packaging solutions that help to keep food fresher for longer and the SAVE FOOD campaign provides the ideal forum to show both manufacturers and consumers how they too can make a difference." 
Courtesy of Packing Europe: http://bit.ly/1gmgeNb 
More info: 

FareShare hails 30% jump in surplus food donations

Published: 19 Mar 2014

FareShare, which redistributes surplus food to charities in the UK, says it has seen a 30% increase in donations over the past 12 months but is calling on industry to do more. 
To read the rest of the article, view here: http://www.thegrocer.co.uk/topics/fareshare-hails-30-jump-in-surplus-food-donations/355563.article

Fresh Pod - Fresher flowers for longer

Published: 12 Mar 2014

As a fresh flower seller you will know that the number one challenge has always been, and always will be, delivering flowers to your customers at their highest level of quality and freshness.  
Independent research from both the University of California and QMS Agri Science has conclusively proven that the answer lies, not in harmful pesticides but in preventing the cause of produce aging - naturally occurring, ethylene gas. Ethylene hastens ripening, aging and spoilage.  
It is this problem that Fresh Pod solves. 
Fresh Pod works by controlling ethylene gas - given off as flowers ripen naturally. During the independent tests, Fresh Pod removed the ethylene gas from the environment, much more effectively than its competitors; ensuring cut flowers, bulbs and pot plants remain fresh for up to four times longer than normal. Fresh Pod also kills off air-born spores and bacteria, viruses, rots and moulds, ensuring the health of your plants.  
Types of fresh flowers give off different levels of ethylene and all have different levels of sensitivity. Combining flowers in arrangements, displaying them in a retail environment next to fresh fruit and vegetables or just placing a vase of flowers near a fruit bowl can speed up deterioration. 
Some of the effects of Ethylene on flowers include, 
• Buds and leaf drop 
• Yellowing of leaves 
• Loss of deep colouring 
• Flower or petal drop 
• Irregular bud opening 
• Premature death  
• Susceptibility to disease 
• Retarded plant growth  
It is estimated that upwards of 30% of flowers perish prematurely due to the harmful effects of Ethylene. 
Fresh Pod is available as a commercial solution for protecting flowers whilst on display. The pods come in several options ranging from sachets that can be put in with a flower arrangement to large filter units for use in your store. It also allows different flowers to be stored together whilst still effectively removing the ethylene gas. Tests proved Fresh Pod removes up to 98.9% of harmful ethylene gas and will reduce waste, improve the environment and ultimately save money.  
Fresh Pod has been extensively tested and approved by many worldwide organisations including the OMRI. It has been approved by the Soil Association in the UK. Fresh Pod is currently being used to protect fruit, vegetables and flowers in storage and also to transport fresh produce packed in New Covent Garden and shipped around the world.  
For more information on Fresh Pod (www.freshpod.co.uk) and how it can be used to protect the freshness of your flowers, please contact the team on 01603 702374, or email info@freshpod.co.uk.

Supermarket Aldi makes electricity from waste using Dolav plastic pallet boxes

Published: 12 Mar 2014

Food waste is unavoidable. Aldi has more than five-hundred UK stores, which like all others, must manage waste food disposal. Wherever possible, Aldi donates food still suitable for human consumption to the FareShare charity. Inevitably there is some food that can't be consumed because it is past its use-by-date and Aldi collects this waste food to make biogas to generate electricity for the National Grid. After a pilot trial last year, run from the Atherstone distribution centre, Aldi rolled out its programme nationally following a launch in March 2013. 
Using Dolav plastic pallet boxes the food waste is transported back to Aldi distribution centres and forklift tipped into trailers. When full, the trailers take the load to a depackaging centre and the food waste goes to an anaerobic digester. There, it is fermented into biogas and the residues are used as farm fertiliser. For Aldi, there is a cost associated with this process. It is environmentally responsible and it contributes towards Aldi achieving its zero landfill objective. 
Aldi removes food waste daily. Empty Dolavs with polythene liners and lids are delivered each day by supply vehicles. The stores put their organic waste in to these empty Dolav containers which go back on the supply vehicles' return trip. For the UK stores there are four Dolavs each, making for a 'fleet' of some two thousand Dolav pallet boxes in circulation every day. 
Aldi uses the Euro pallet-sized Dolav 800x1200. An Aldi spokesperson said: "As a responsible retailer, we are always looking for ways to continue to be environmentally friendly. The Dolav boxes are solid and do not leak, they are very easy to wash and keep clean. They are robust - the modular one-piece moulding design means they don't break and the Euro-pallet size fits our systems." 
Courtest of MHWMagazine: http://bit.ly/1fsIqNY

Norwich's green heroes: Winners of the Norwich Eco Awards announced

Published: 11 Mar 2014

They are the unsung heroes whose quiet dedication helps make Norwich the green city it is, but now, as Norwich Eco Award winners, we can shout about their achievements from the rooftops. 
The five worthy winners have been recognised in the Norwich City Council awards, now in their sixth year, sponsored by the Norwich Evening News, which showcases local talent and commitment to the environment. 
The victorious entries received their awards from the Sheriff of Norwich, Graham Creelman. 
Those whose work was recognised include Bicycle Links, whose recycling workshop was named eco small or medium business of the year, and Fifth Quarter, whose development of edible community gardens won the eco community group prize. 
Two schools were also honoured. 
West Earlham Junior School's dedication to making Norwich a more eco-friendly place to live saw it win the eco primary school of the year award, while the Open Academy in Heartsease won the eco secondary school title for its "huge range of environmental projects". 
And there was also joy for the Friends of Norwich in Bloom, which won the coveted eco hero title. 
Mike Stonard, Norwich City Council cabinet member for the environment, said: "I think the awards are really important because you need to celebrate and recognise the work that has been done across the community to be more environmentally aware. 
"I think our eco heroes do an awful lot of work with the community. People see the flowers in the city, but they don't realise how much work goes into them, and the extent to which they involve volunteers. That's one of the reasons we chose them as eco hero." 
Asked why the awards matter, he added: "Last year's eco hero said he thought he was the only person doing this sort of work. I think it's really good for them to know that they are working on a number of similar projects and there's an opportunity to mutually support each other, and to demonstrate what good ideas there are out there." 
What is your number one green tip? Email martin.george@archant.co.uk 
Courtesy of EDP24: http://bit.ly/1lu8uJ5

Fresh Pod EASTER Offer

Published: 10 Mar 2014

With Easter on the horizon, we would like to offer you an exclusive 10% off your first Fresh Pod order. We have a range of Fresh Pod solutions available starting from less than a penny for our smallest sachet to protect bouquets, through to our filter systems which protect flowers in shop displays, store rooms and transport. 
Our products removes 98.9% of Ethylene surrounding the product therefore extending the life by up to four times and is guaranteed to reduce waste and save money. 
Not only will you save money on waste but your customers will enjoy their flowers for their special occasion for much longer.  
To take advantage of this offer or for more information call Jessica on 
01603 702374 or email jessica@freshpod.co.uk

Step up to the plate to stop food waste

Published: 10 Mar 2014

Great strides have been made in decreasing the amount of food we throw away in the UK - but we can't be complacent about this vital issue. 
Quite rightly, the issue of food waste is at the heart of the green agenda today. We simply cannot keep generating the amount of food waste that we do, with all the associated wasted water and energy. The costs to the environment, the economy, and to the average UK household purse, are just too big to ignore. 
Seven years ago, Wrap's [Waste & Resources Action Programme's] ground-breaking research put this issue on the map, detailing the what, where, why and how of food waste, and how much of it could be avoided. It showed that the 8.3 million tonnes of all food and drink that we were wasting annually in the UK was costing the average family £700 a year, and accounting for 5% of the country's water footprint. It was clear something big needed to change - and it started to. 
Since then, we have been at the very heart of the action, working with businesses and consumers. The voluntary Courtauld Commitment, for example, has brought together governments, retailers and brands to tackle household food waste in a way not seen before. Our campaign Love Food Hate Waste, meanwhile, has provided an unrivalled platform to inform and engage with consumers about how to avoid food waste. 
As a result, the amount of avoidable household food waste has reduced by 21% since 2007. A huge achievement, yes; but, the truth is, momentum has slowed. Our latest report showed that 4.2 million tonnes of avoidable food waste - worth a staggering £12.5bn - is still being thrown away each year, and the rate of reduction in food waste has gone down. The reduction in food waste has only just kept pace with the increase in the cost of food - meaning we are all still wasting the same amount, financially. 
This is a time when family budgets are tight, and we live in a world where demand for food is increasing and the resilience of the supply chain is being regularly tested - so you might think there are enough drivers to keep the momentum going. But there aren't. We all need to up our game. 
UK retailers, politicians and consumers are saying this is a priority. I know there is real commitment to tackle this issue and now, more than ever, we need to work together to achieve it. We can't afford to let momentum wane. 
Avoidable food waste is a challenge for us all to tackle. Every day, I see innovations and initiatives by governments, local and national; by communities, by businesses, by think tanks, by consumers. We need to build on what we have achieved to date, roll out more initiatives and share ideas and best practice in manufacturing, in the supply chain, in supermarkets and in homes, up and down the country. 
We, at Wrap, think that it is possible to reduce avoidable household food waste by another 15 million tonnes by 2025, saving a staggering £45bn. That would represent a halving of the amount of food that was being wasted when we first started work in this area, seven years ago. It is a challenging ambition, but, I believe, an achievable one. 
We have all the ingredients for success here. We simply must not waste this opportunity to collectively step up to the plate and act now. 
Courtesy of The Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2014/mar/02/step-up-to-the-plate-to-stop-food-waste

Amazon Signs UK deal with Mexican food company

Published: 6 Mar 2014

Mexgrocer.co.uk to sell 100 products, such as margarita mix and chilli sauce, on Amazon.co.uk. 
Amazon has made its latest stride into selling groceries to online shoppers by signing a deal with a Mexican food company to sell its goods on its British website. 
The agreement is the most recent push into food retailing by Amazon, which has quietly built up a selection of thousands of dried goods on its UK website. The online retailer has been expanding its Amazon Fresh service, which delivers fresh groceries to customers' doors, across the US in the past year, and is believed to be considering bringing it across the Atlantic. 
On Tuesday, mexgrocer.co.uk announced it would be selling an initial 100 products, such as margarita mix and chilli sauce, on Amazon.co.uk. The Luton-based company says it will be able to dispatch orders within 24 hours of them being made. 
Amazon started selling dried groceries such as biscuits and canned food in the UK in 2010 and now boasts tens of thousands of products. 
Moving into the UK grocery sector would come as a serious challenge to Britain's major supermarkets if Amazon carries over its practice of winning market share by charging rock-bottom prices for books and CDs. 
Courtesy of the Telegraph, http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/retailandconsumer/10676402/Amazon-signs-UK-deal-with-Mexican-food-company.html

Fresh Food for Schools

Published: 6 Mar 2014

New guidance aimed at inspiring Scotland's children to make good food choices that will continue into adulthood has been published today. 
With today marking International School Meals Day, Better Eating, Better Learning sets out advice and support on how to improve school food, children's knowledge about food and its contribution to their overall health and well-being. 
The guidance has been developed by an expert working group in close partnership with COSLA and outlines the following: 
All food served in schools should promote healthy eating. 
School meals should champion fresh, local, seasonable produce. 
Caterers and teaching staff should collaborate on food education to improve the diets of children and young people. 
Everyone involved in school food provision should understand the need for inspiring menus which take into account nutrition, health and environmental impacts. 
Feedback from children and young people should inform school food and education. 
All staff involved in school food provision and food education should have the opportunity to undertake professional training in food, health, and the environment. 
Cabinet Secretary for Education Michael Russell said: 
"The Scottish Government is committed to providing high quality school meals and this new guidance sets out how we will go about achieving this. There has already been nutritional guidance in place for a number of years, but Better Eating, Better Learning aims to move beyond the simple health benefits, expanding the guidance out to the wider role of food, and particularly school food, in our society. 
"The Scottish Government is committed to giving our children the best start in life and how they eat at school forms a crucial part of a child's development, including how well they learn.  
Today's guidance strengthens our approach at a national level ahead of every P1-3 pupil being offered a school meal for free every day, which is also aimed at raising attainment." 
Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs Richard Lochhead said: 
"Alongside clear guiding principles on the role of food in health promotion, I am very pleased to see sustainability and the importance of local produce feature so heavily within Better Eating, Better Learning. 
"Scotland produces a wide variety of food and drink which is renowned across the world and at home and it's important that we provide our pupils with the best quality meals available. This new guidance is also an important food education tool as it will help children learn about where their food comes from, its journey from farm to plate and the importance of healthy eating." 
Charles Milne, Director, Food Standards Agency, said: 
"I am delighted to welcome publication of Better Eating, Better Learning. Schools have a pivotal role in providing food education in the broadest sense, as well as giving children and young people the opportunity to experience interesting, tasty and healthy food every day. Better Eating Better Learning makes it clear why school food really matters." 
Courtesy of Scotland Food and Drink: http://www.scotlandfoodanddrink.org/news/article-info/4964/fresh-food-for-schools.aspx

Use your loaf to prevent food waste

Published: 5 Mar 2014

Can you believe that bread - that most useful of staples - is the food we throw away most often? A whopping 24 million slices get thrown in the bin every day in the UK - and that's just from our homes. The good news is we're getting better: that figure is more than a third less than we were throwing away in 2007 - but it's still a massive waste! 
We all do it: if you think you don't, keep a food diary or put all your food waste into a container for a week. I didn't believe I wasted food, especially bread, before I started working at Love Food Hate Waste, but I'm ashamed to say I did. Those few slices at the bottom of the bag really do add up: 24 million slices of bread would stretch up and down Snowdon 110 times, or the Shard building in London almost 400 times. Happily, I now buy only what I need and use what I buy. 
Because we don't like to run out of staple foods, such as bread and milk, we buy some 'just in case'. Most of the bread that ends up in the bin has either gone past the date shown on its wrapper, or we think it has 'gone off'. But the 'best before' date simply means the bread is in its peak condition before that date - it is perfectly fine to eat, providing it still looks and smells OK. 
Hopefully these tips will help you to end the bread waste in your house, as they have in mine, and thereby reduce the damage that food waste does to the environment. 
• Keeping bread in the fridge is a bad idea - it goes stale very quickly there, so the good old bread bin is best. 
• If, like me, you always end up with half a loaf going off at the end of the week, divide your loaf in half when you get it home on shopping day. Put half in the original bag, sealed with a bag clip or clothes peg (use a straw to draw out the air from the bag when it's sealed - it keeps it fresher for longer) and put the other half (sliced if needed) in a sealed bag or pot in the freezer. Toast the frozen slices straight from the freezer; it tastes just as good - the only time it will taste a bit 'freezery' is if your bag or pot isn't sealed, because the frost gets on to the bread and causes freezer burn. 
• If you've bought a whole unsliced crusty loaf and it's gone hard, splash it with a bit of cold water and reheat it in the oven to bring the crust back to life. 
• Look out for smaller loaves that have been introduced by Hovis and Kingsmill, among others, to make it easier for us to only buy what we need. 
• If you end up with bread crusts that nobody eats, freeze them. Then, if you make fish cakes, bean burgers, savoury crumbles etc, simply take a couple out of the freezer, defrost them in the microwave and blitz in a food processor (or use a grater) to make breadcrumbs. 
• Try out some bread-saving recipes - including tomato gratin, roast-herb fillet of fish, panzanella, 'le pudding', and garlic and bread soup (it's amazing) from lovefoodhatewaste.com. 
There really is satisfaction to be had from using up the end of the loaf!  
Courtesy of The Guardian: http://bit.ly/1kuvYAA

Rampant food waste a barrier to cutting poverty: World Bank

Published: 3 Mar 2014

he world loses or wastes a staggering 25 percent to 33 percent of the food it produces for consumption, losses that can mean the difference between an adequate diet and malnutrition in many countries, the World Bank said in a report released on Thursday. 
"The amount of food wasted and lost globally is shameful," said Jim Yong Kim, president of the World Bank. 
"Millions of people around the world go to bed hungry every night, and yet millions of tons of food end up in trash cans or spoiled on the way to market." 
In regions where undernourishment is common, such as Africa and South Asia, the food losses translate to 400 to 500 calories per person, per day. In the developed world, the losses can be more like 750 to 1,500 per day. 
Cereals represent more than half of all food lost or wasted, 53 percent by calorie content. By weight, fruits and vegetables represent the largest share of global food loss and waste, the World Bank said. 
Most losses take place at the consumption, production and handling and storage stages of the food chain, but regional breakdowns show noted differences. 
In North America, some 61 percent of losses are in the consumption stage - for example, food purchased and left rotting in refrigerators. 
In countries like the United States and the United Kingdom, an average family of four wastes $1,600 and $1,100 per year, respectively, at the consumption stage. 
Large supermarkets' purchasing policies may provide incentives to overproduction of foods, and promotional offers could encourage over-buying by consumers, leading to food waste at home, the report said. 
In Sub-Saharan Africa, just five percent of food losses are at the consumption stage, but vast amounts of food are wasted during production and processing. 
The report said that food loss and waste cause huge inefficiencies in economic, energy and natural resource use. 
For example, the large amount of water used to grow apples or irrigate rice or roast coffee is also wasted if the end-product is lost along the way. 
Potential solutions to limit waste were said to include changing agricultural production techniques; making large investments in transport and storage infrastructure, and changing consumer and commercial behaviour. 
Courtesy of: reuters.com: http://uk.reuters.com/article/2014/02/27/us-worldbank-food-waste-idUKBREA1Q17220140227

Step up to the plate to stop food waste

Published: 2 Mar 2014

Step up to the plate to stop food waste 
Great strides have been made in decreasing the amount of food we throw away in the UK - but we can't be complacent about this vital issue. 
Quite rightly, the issue of food waste is at the heart of the green agenda today. We simply cannot keep generating the amount of food waste that we do, with all the associated wasted water and energy. The costs to the environment, the economy, and to the average UK household purse, are just too big to ignore. 
Seven years ago, Wrap's [Waste & Resources Action Programme's] ground-breaking research put this issue on the map, detailing the what, where, why and how of food waste, and how much of it could be avoided. It showed that the 8.3 million tonnes of all food and drink that we were wasting annually in the UK was costing the average family £700 a year, and accounting for 5% of the country's water footprint. It was clear something big needed to change - and it started to. 
Since then, we have been at the very heart of the action, working with businesses and consumers. The voluntary Courtauld Commitment, for example, has brought together governments, retailers and brands to tackle household food waste in a way not seen before. Our campaign Love Food Hate Waste, meanwhile, has provided an unrivalled platform to inform and engage with consumers about how to avoid food waste. 
As a result, the amount of avoidable household food waste has reduced by 21% since 2007. A huge achievement, yes; but, the truth is, momentum has slowed. Our latest report showed that 4.2 million tonnes of avoidable food waste - worth a staggering £12.5bn - is still being thrown away each year, and the rate of reduction in food waste has gone down. The reduction in food waste has only just kept pace with the increase in the cost of food - meaning we are all still wasting the same amount, financially. 
This is a time when family budgets are tight, and we live in a world where demand for food is increasing and the resilience of the supply chain is being regularly tested - so you might think there are enough drivers to keep the momentum going. But there aren't. We all need to up our game. 
UK retailers, politicians and consumers are saying this is a priority. I know there is real commitment to tackle this issue and now, more than ever, we need to work together to achieve it. We can't afford to let momentum wane. 
Avoidable food waste is a challenge for us all to tackle. Every day, I see innovations and initiatives by governments, local and national; by communities, by businesses, by think tanks, by consumers. We need to build on what we have achieved to date, roll out more initiatives and share ideas and best practice in manufacturing, in the supply chain, in supermarkets and in homes, up and down the country. 
We, at Wrap, think that it is possible to reduce avoidable household food waste by another 15 million tonnes by 2025, saving a staggering £45bn. That would represent a halving of the amount of food that was being wasted when we first started work in this area, seven years ago. It is a challenging ambition, but, I believe, an achievable one. 
We have all the ingredients for success here. We simply must not waste this opportunity to collectively step up to the plate and act now. 
Courtesy of the Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2014/mar/02/step-up-to-the-plate-to-stop-food-waste

'Only Organic' launches video campaign

Published: 27 Feb 2014

A trade group of organic food manufacturers has launched a new advertising campaign aimed at helping consumers understand the difference between foods with "organic" and "natural" labels. 
The campaign debuted with a humorous "mockumentary" video showing how easy it is for companies to label their food products as "natural" — noting there in no official definition and little enforcement of misleading claims. Products labeled as "organic," by contrast are subject to stringent environmental and animal welfare standards enforced by U.S. Department of Agriculture, according to Organic Voices, Washington-based trade group of organic food manufacturers advocating for mandatory GMO labeling. 
"Foods made with the use of toxic persistent pesticides and even genetically engineered ingredients are being labeled as natural," Gary Hirshberg, chairman of Stonyfield Farm and a member of the trade group, said in a statement. "Only organic guarantees that food is produced without the use of toxic persistent pesticides, hormones, antibiotics or genetically engineered ingredients. Only organic gives you complete piece of mind." 
The videos were developed by the recently launched agency Humanaut with help from advertising icon Alex Bogusky. 
While the Food and Drug Administration and USDA discourage companies from including "natural" claims on processed foods containing synthetic or artificial ingredients, there is no official definition of "natural" and little enforcement of misleading claims. 
"The public needs new tools to understand the benefits of organic and to be able to distinguish between organic foods and all other unverified claims," Laura Batcha, executive director of the associated Organic Trade Association, said in a release. 
Courtesy of Supermarket News: http://supermarketnews.com/laws-amp-regulations/only-organic-launches-video-campaign#ixzz2uX589FGY

How planning ahead can save food and cut your shopping bills

Published: 24 Feb 2014

MUM-OF-THREE Sarah Hainey kept a diary for a week to see how much she could use up rather than throw out after research showed families can save an average of £40 a month with a few small changes. 
PLANNING ahead and only buying what she thinks she'll use helps mum-of-three Sarah Hainey keep food waste and shopping costs down. 
Sarah, 36, is married to health and safety manager Paul, 42, who works offshore, and the couple live in Barassie, Troon with children Emma, 11, Jodi, 10, and Andrew, five. 
An average weekly food shop costs about £40 when Paul is away - but can rise to £150 when he's home. 
Sarah said: "The main items in my weekly shop were mince, chicken breasts, bacon, eggs, grapes, apples, carrots, peppers, apples, leeks, garlic, bread, ready-made puff pastry, filled snack wraps and frozen pizza. 
"I checked the cupboards and fridge and I had lentils, spaghetti, potatoes, stock and a turnip. 
"My milk is delivered and I buy diluting juice rather than fruit juice and always keep sweetcorn and peas in the freezer. 
"For the kids' packed lunches, they'll usually have brioche rolls and Peperamis, yoghurts and fruit." 
"When Paul's away, I spend about £40 on food for a week and hardly waste anything. But when he's home the weekly shopping can rise to £150 as we'll end up having different meals to the kids as Paul is really good at cooking curries that they find too spicy. 
"Paul will go shopping too and we'll lose track of what's in the fridge so more will end up thrown out." 
"The kids had cereal for breakfast we all had bacon and eggs for brunch. 
"For dinner, I made a mince pie and served it with potatoes and sweetcorn. Potato peelings went in the recycling bin." 
Waste: 0 - peelings recycled. 
"We had cereal for breakfast and brioches, grapes/raisins for lunch. 
"I used up the rest of the mince to make spaghetti bolognese using peppers and carrots for dinner. 
"There was a portion left over so I put it in the freezer. 
"I had to throw out two bread rolls that had gone hard and half a loaf of bread from last week. I fed it to the birds, but it was still a waste." 
Waste: £1 - bread to birds 
"Breakfast was cereal and lunch was tinned spaghetti on toast and apples. 
"For dinner I used two rashers of leftover bacon from Sunday to make a lentil soup with carrots and half a turnip. Our rabbit Max ate the carrot peelings - but didn't like the turnip." 
Waste: 0 - peelings to rabbit  
"Most days the kids will have cereal for breakfast and for lunch brioches, Peperamis, grapes, raisins and an apple for lunch. 
"We ate up the leftover soup for dinner. I realised I wasn't going to get to eat the chicken breasts and I already had some in my freezer so I gave them to my gran. They weren't technically thrown away - but I didn't use them." 
Waste: £2.50 - chicken given away 
"We had our usual breakfast and lunch and because the girls go to a dance class, they had a snack of a wrap and a pizza after the class." 
Waste: 0 
"I made spaghetti carbonara for dinner with a ready sauce I already had in the cupboard. 
"There was a small amount left over, which I threw into the recycling bin. It wasn't enough to freeze. 
"I found three wrinkly apples from last week hidden under the grapes that had to go in the recycling." 
Waste: £1.50 - recycled. 
"For lunch we had tinned chicken soup that was in the cupboard and had a supper from the chippy at my gran's. 
"It was a mixture of sausages and chips, bread and butter and ­fritters - but the bread, fritter and half a sausage ended up in the r­ecycling bin." 
Waste: £3 - recycled. 
Total food waste for week: £8 
Possible total food waste over a year: £416 
Joe Queen, executive chef at The Cook School in Kilmarnock has come up with some tips to make the most of your food, waste less and help your budget: 
Plan ahead and think about using different cooking methods to reuse leftovers. 
Buy a whole chicken. You can use the bones for stock for a soup, and the chicken for different meals, either by braising it or making a chicken stew, pie or curry. 
With a piece of beef you can try braising it down, add veg to make a stew or soup or use it in a pie. 
If fruit such as pears, rhubarb or bananas are going soft, stew them with sugar then use flour and butter to make a crumble. 
Buy fruit that's in season for the best price. 
Try a one-pot dinner for ease, such as combining courgette, onion and carrots with a mix of wild rice and long grain rice and chicken or vegetable stock and tomatoes. Sear off the chicken, put on top of the rice and bake together in the oven. 
Use up leftovers and vegetables by making a soup. 
If you've leftover cheese - why not sear off a pork chop, cover it with mustard, cheese and tomato and bake in the oven. 
Use mince for a bolognese sauce, in a shepherd's pie with mashed potato, or in a pie with ready-made pastry. 
With eggs and cheese you can create an omelette. Use up peppers, onions, ham and eggs to create a Spanish omelette. 
* Find out about improving your cooking skills at www.cookschool.org 
Courtesy of the daily record: http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/lifestyle/money-alert-how-planning-ahead-3177337

8 Eye-Opening Facts About Eating Organic Food

Published: 19 Feb 2014

As organic foods make their way into more and more supermarkets around the country, the option to choose between organic and conventionally farmed products is increasingly at your fingertips.  
How do you make the decision?  
Get your facts straight before you fill your cart with misinformation. 
Organic farming never uses pesticides: False  
Many organic farmers do try to avoid using pesticides, and most organic foods have lower total pesticide residues, but the fact is, organic farmers use many methods of controlling pests, including pesticides. Part of what defines "organic" is not the absence of pesticides, but the particular pesticides used. Only certain compounds are approved for use as pesticides on organic farms. This includes ingredients derived from natural sources, or synthetic ones that adhere to a list of regulations not required for conventional agriculture-for example, potassium silicate sourced from naturally occurring sand, and copper sulfate, provided that copper accumulation in the soil is minimized. Here's the rub: Organic pesticides may be just as bad for you and for other animals as their synthetic counterparts (and in the case of copper sulfate, even worse). Therefore, it's important to wash your produce even if it's organically grown. 
Organic food spoils faster: True(ish)  
Organic foods do not have preservatives added and they are not irradiated, two methods used to stop the mold, bacteria and yeast that break down food and cause it to spoil. Irradiation uses energy-much like a microwave-to kill microorganisms, including dangerous ones that cause food-borne illness. Preservatives are chemicals that extend shelf life. By opting out of both methods, organic foods have less defense against the critters that cause spoiling, but no study has been conducted to quantify just how much faster organic food spoils. Interestingly, organic milk often has a longer shelf life than regular milk, though that is not inherent to its organic-ness. Most organic milk undergoes ultrapasteurization, where the milk is heated to a higher temperature than the usual pasteurization process. Normal pasteurization kills potentially dangerous bacteria in milk; ultrapasteurization kills everything. Organic companies probably ultrapasteurize to compensate for the fact that their cows don't get antibiotics, but not all dairies do it. 
Organic foods have more salmonella and E. coli : False  
So, if organic foods don't use irradiation to kill bacteria and other microorganisms, does that mean they're less safe? No, it doesn't. When scientists put organic and conventional foods under the microscope, they found no statistical difference between them when it came to E. coli. And thankfully, whether organic or not, our food is screened for pathogens by the USDA and the FDA. Yes, there's still risk, as recent recalls ofSalmonella-tainted chicken and Glass Onion Catering's E. coli-contaminated salad have shown, but you don't need to worry about organic foods any more than you do about conventional ones. 
Organic food tastes better: False  
Though many people will tell you organic food tastes better, when organic and conventional foods go head-to-head in taste tests, we can't tell the difference. So why do so many people swear they can tell them apart? Sometimes, it could be a matter of timing. Organic foods that are sourced locally are likely to be fresher than conventionally grown varieties that have traveled farther. But perhaps our belief in the tastiness of non-conventional food is psychological: A December 2013 study gave volunteers two identical cups of coffee to try-one was presented as a plain ol' cuppa joe, and one was labeled "eco-friendly." The tasters claimed they preferred the taste of the "eco-friendly" one. 
Courtesy of Yahoo: http://shine.yahoo.com/healthy-living/8-eye-opening-facts-eating-organic-food-163400441.html


Published: 18 Feb 2014

1. The Eastern Agri-Tech Growth Initiative is designed to provide a significant boost to the food production, agriculture industry and research cluster by investing in new market and supply chain development, essential skills development and the development, application and commercialisation of Research and Development (R&D).  
2. The Agri-Tech Growth Initiative aims to create 365 local jobs over two years, starting from January 2014.  
3. The Agri-Tech Growth Initiative has two main funds: 
• A £2m Agri-Tech Growth Fund which will provide grants of between £25,000 and £150,000 to enhance business and jobs growth, and support product development. The Fund is aimed at supporting improvements in agricultural productivity through the introduction of new products or processes and encourage improvements to existing product/ processes and energy efficiency.  
• A £540,000 R&D and Prototyping Fund which will provide financial assistance to attract innovative and novel technologies. Planned research critical to the development of new products or processes within the Agri-Tech sector can be supported with grants of between £10,000 and £60,000 to cover the costs of research and development. 
4. Both Funds will operate until 31 March 2015 (or sooner if the money has been allocated and spent). 
Agri-Tech Growth Fund  
5. The key eligibility criteria are as follows:  
a) Applications can only be accepted from a Small to Medium-sized Enterprise (SME) which must be a sole trader, partnership, limited company or not for profit business whose main business is in or related to the Agri-Tech sector, defined as follows: 
• a medium-sized enterprise employing less than 250 people and has an annual turnover not exceeding 50m Euro and/or an annual balance sheet total not exceeding 43m Euro.  
• a small enterprise employing less than 50 people and has an annual turnover and/or annual balance sheet total not exceeding 10m Euro. 
• a micro-enterprise employing less than 10 people and has an annual turnover and/or annual balance sheet total not exceeding 2m Euro.  
To help potential applicants work out what their equivalent annual turnover and balance sheet amounts are in GB Pounds, please use the web link below. This will give potential applicants the current Euro/GB Pound exchange rate in place at the time when applicants are considering applying for support. The currency converter box will show the current month and year. Click on the bottom drop down and scroll down the list of currencies until you find "GB Pound Sterling". Click on this and then click on the "convert" button. This will then show the appropriate rate. 
b) Applications will be considered from farmers, food manufacturers and retailers. This includes sectors such as food processing and food wholesaling, as well as related industries such as process engineering. The Fund is also aimed at businesses that are involved in technologies which have the potential of application to the food industry as the programme aspires to support innovation and its application to the food industry. Each applicant will be expected to provide a clear indication of the beneficial change to productivity.  
c) Applicants should be established in product markets that are likely to grow strongly in the medium term.  
d) Applications cannot be accepted from subsidiaries of large companies.  
e) Applicants must be intending to create permanent long term employment through new jobs, or protecting existing jobs at a rate of one job per £5,500 of grant aid given. 
f) The project and jobs created and/or protected with the funding given must be located within any of the following local authority areas: Babergh; Breckland; Broadland; Cambridge City; East Cambridgeshire; Fenland; Forest Heath; Great Yarmouth; Huntingdonshire; Ipswich; Kings Lynn & West Norfolk; Mid Suffolk; North Hertfordshire; North Norfolk; Norwich; Peterborough; Rutland; St Edmundsbury; South Cambridgeshire; South Norfolk; Suffolk Coastal; Uttlesford and Waveney. 
g) Grants of between £25,000 and £150,000 are provided up to a maximum of 25% of the total cost of the project. Applicants must be able to clearly demonstrate that they are able to provide the remaining 75% of the project costs from other sources of private sector investment, such as the company's own resources, commercial loans or other types of investment. Applications can only be made if the applicant is either already in discussions with financial providers or has the minimum 75% of match funding available. No application can be approved until all the required match funding has been secured.  
h) Applicants must be able to demonstrate that they have been unable to secure all the funding they require from other financial sources, such as a loan or another grant scheme. 
i) Applications will only be considered if an applicant can demonstrate that the project is investment ready and backed by a sound Business Plan and Project Plan.  
R&D and Prototyping Fund  
6. The key eligibility criteria are as follows: 
a) The scheme is aimed at developing agricultural research and innovation. Applicants will be mainly research institutes and food manufacturers this includes sectors such as food processing and wholesaling; as well as related industries such as process engineering. It also includes businesses that are involved in technologies, which have the potential of application to the agriculture and food industries. Funding is reserved for novel or new commercial applications of research that are currently not viable under current research budgets or corporate R&D priorities. Applicants must be able to demonstrate that R&D/prototyping activities would not otherwise happen without financial assistance. Annex A to these guidance notes sets out what types of research are eligible for support.  
b) Applications can only be accepted where the planned innovation/research activity will be carried out within any of the following local authority areas: Babergh; Breckland; Broadland; Cambridge City; East Cambridgeshire; Fenland; Forest Heath; Great Yarmouth; Huntingdonshire; Ipswich; Kings Lynn & West Norfolk; Mid Suffolk; North Hertfordshire; North Norfolk; Norwich; Peterborough; Rutland; St Edmundsbury; South Cambridgeshire; South Norfolk; Suffolk Coastal; Uttlesford and Waveney. 
c) Grants of between £10,000 and £60,000 are provided up to a maximum of 50% of the total project cost. Applicants must be able to clearly demonstrate that they have secured the required 50% match funding from other sources of private sector investment, such as the company's own resources, commercial loans or other types of investment. Applications can only be made if the applicant is either already in discussions with financial providers or has the minimum 50% of match funding available. No application can be approved until all the required match funding has been secured. 
d) Applications will only be considered if an applicant can demonstrate that the project is investment ready and backed by a sound Business Plan and Project Plan. The business plan must include confirmation that the applicant business has a management team with relevant background and that appropriate Intellectual Property Rights have been or are in the process of being secured.  
7. For both the Agri-Tech Growth Fund and R&D and Prototyping Fund, projects must be capable of bringing significant improvements in agricultural/food production. 
8. Applicants will be expected to provide a clear explanation about the project and an indication of the beneficial change and impact that the project will bring to productivity in agriculture and food production. 
9. Applicants must explain why the grant is needed and what would happen to the project if funding was not provided and what the impact would be on their business and the sector if the project did not proceed.  
10. Applicants must provide: 
a) the number of new jobs that will be created as a direct result of the investment project; and, 
b) (where appropriate) the number of jobs that will be protected as a direct result of the investment project.  
11. Protected jobs are those jobs that will be maintained as a direct result of the project. Jobs can only be considered protected where there is a real threat that they will be lost in the near future if the project does not proceed. Jobs created/protected (even where these have the same job title) should be entered on separate lines. 
12. The number of jobs should be based on a Full-Time equivalent which is equal to one Full-Time job or two Part-Time jobs where: Full-Time= 30 or more hours per week; Part-Time = more than 15 hours, but fewer than 30 hours per week.  
13. Each job should be included for the two years that we would expect the job to be maintained. Where jobs are maintained for longer than two years and beyond FY 2018/19 please record this in the narrative box below the table on the application form. 
14. We would also like to know whether the new and and/or protected jobs are skilled, semi-skilled or unskilled positions and what type of new skills will be created by the project. The National Vocational Qualification levels set out in the table in Annex B to these guidance notes might be a helpful reference point.  
15. All applicants for either Fund must complete the Pre-Qualification Questionnaire (PQQ) which will determine whether you are eligible to apply for financial support. If after completing the PQQ you are eligible, you will be sent an application form (via email) and invited to apply. 
16. Your application form will be should be sent to Cambridgeshire County Council's Enterprise & Economy Team (CCC). Depending on the location in which the project will take place, a team of skilled project assessors from either CCC or Norfolk County Council will assess your application on behalf of the Greater Cambridge Greater Peterborough Enterprise Partnership and New Anglia LEP. Our assessors will review your information and ask any further questions they may have.  
17. The assessment may require a visit to the premises of the applicant business/organisation by one of our team. 
18. If the project meets the criteria set out above and the application completes the assessment, it will be passed to our Investment Panel (Panel) to review. The Panel will review the application and pass it on to our Agri-Tech Programme Delivery Board (Board) with a recommendation to either approve or decline. The Board will make the final decision whether to support the application or not. Both the Panel and the Board include business people with experience and knowledge of the food industry, including research, farming and food processing. 
19. We will notify you of the Board's decision whether to support or decline your application. If your application is approved we will finalise due diligence and provide you with an agreement to review and sign before the project begins. This agreement will set out the key milestones and the dates for you to claim your funding. If your application is unsuccessful, we will contact you to let you know why your application has been declined.  
20. We will also inform you if your proposed project does not meet the criteria (as set out above), at either the Pre-Qualification stage and during the assessment. Please note that applications that do not meet the criteria will not be submitted to either the Panel or the Board. 
21. We aim to reach a decision about your application within 45 working days from receiving a full application with all supporting documentation.  
22. We will keep you informed of progress with your application throughout the process. 
In the first instance you should contact Martin Lutman, Agri-Tech Project Manager, on 01223 967009 or 01733 602009, or via email at info@agritechgrants.co.uk 
Alternatively you can contact the Economic Development Team at your Local Authority. 
You should email an electronic copy of your application to  
andrew.poulton@cambridgeshire.gov.uk and also post a copy to: 
Andrew Poulton  
Economic Strategy and Partnerships Officer  
Enterprise and Economy Team 
Cambridgeshire County Council 
Shire Hall 
Cambridge CB3 0AP  
Courtesy of: www.yourlocalenterprisepartnership.co.uk

Astonishing haul of food grabbed from supermarket bin in just 10 minutes by 'skip divers'...

Published: 17 Feb 2014

- EXCLUSIVE: Students grabbed haul of meats, ready meals, fruit and even 'fresh' roses from a supermarket bin 
- The group go 'binning' every week and grab up to £50 worth of free meals 
- They say they do it in an ethical stand against supermarket waste... but turn their noses up at fish fingers 
- Campaigner says he lived off one shop's bins for six months, taking £890 
- Students spoke out after charges dropped against skip-divers last week 
- 'Romantic' student gave the flowers taken from a bin to his girlfriend.. 
This is the astonishing haul of free food that a group of student 'skip divers' snatched from a supermarket dustbin. 
The group scaled a 10ft metal gate before taking the food which was past its sell-by date out of a stinking bin compound. 
More or less weekly the environmental activists visit their local supermarket, netting up to £50 of luxury food on each trip - and insist it is all good to eat. 
The students claim they take their meals from dustbins in protest at the amount of good food that is thrown away by big stores - though they do turn their noses up at fish fingers. One said: 'Do you even know what's in those things?'. 
MailOnline joined the group in a midnight raid on some supermarket dustbins and watched them take thrown-out rolls, sausages, microwave meals, pizza and even flowers, all in original packaging. 
The group are all highly-qualified students who go to one of Britain's top universities and claim that 'binning' is driven by anger at the supermarkets. 
Last year Tesco threw away almost 30,000 tonnes of food in just six months, 41 per cent of it from the bakery. Across the UK an estimated 15 million tonnes are discarded a year, including by customers. 
Despite this many supermarkets are hitting back at skip-divers, the students said. 
Some pour bleach or blue dye on their products, while others slap 'not for human consumption' stickers on them. 
Big stores have compounds protected by razor wire or padlock heavy chains around their bins. 
At small, neighbourhood supermarkets, however, they said 'skipping' - also called 'skip-diving' or 'binning' - is booming. 
Armed with bags, head torches, spanners and radiator keys to unlock the bins, the students rifled through half a dozen containers at their local store. 
The whole operation took less than 10 minutes. One 'romantic' student handed the flowers lifted from a bin to his girlfriend. 
After the raid, Amy, 26, a bin-raider for seven years, told MailOnline: 'That was a good one. Sometimes it's all bloody spring onions'. 
However, the students face the threat of arrest. 
Last week prosecutors dropped a controversial case against three men arrested for taking £33 in tomatoes, mushrooms and Mr Kipling cakes from an Iceland in north London. 
They were held for 19 hours before being charged under a little-known section of the Vagrancy Act 1824. However, even Iceland's boss Malcolm Walker questioned the decision, and the charges were eventually withdrawn. 
Criticised by some as a licence to steal, the incident was nevertheless rare. 
There have been only a handful of documented cases since 1877, when a butcher ordered his staff to bury three diseased pigs but instead they dug them back up and sold them as meat.  
Without today's public health laws, they were convicted of theft. 
'Things are different now', said Amy. 'It's just sitting there going to waste. There's no moral argument about it at all in my mind and I've never had to question myself doing it, "is this right or wrong". 
'I've never been sick from binned food. There aren't many rules - just don't take fish or seafood, avoid frozen stuff and trust your nose. 
'I started several years ago and like all things, it got fashionable. There are students doing it all over the country. 
'When the freezers break, that's when the jackpots come in. The time before we got a whole leg of lamb. It was two days out of date and it was fine - it was delicious.' 
Ben, 23, who joined the group last year and goes 'shopping' with them almost evey week, added: 'The spectrum of people doing it is huge. I know people who went to Eton who've done it. 
'There'll be one egg broken in a packet of 15 and the supermarket will just chuck the whole thing away. It's just wrong.' 
The students, who asked not to be identified, defended themselves against the suggestion they were taking food wanted by more needy people or doing it to save on bils. 
Chris, 25, admitted 'there is a money issue as well' but added: 'I lived in one town where homeless guys would go to a particular branch of Tesco. So we wouldn't go there if we could help it. Instead we would go to the suburban Co-Ops where nobody else bothered.' 
The groups also insisted bin-raiders do not just take food, but also campaign for it to be re-used through 'official' channels instead of being thrown away. 
One, the charity FoodCycle, launched in 2009 and has since expanded to 15 British towns and cities. 
It claims to have served more than 85 tonnes of 'reclaimed' food to people who cannot afford to feed themselves. 
Another, a campaign called Feeding the 5,000, has cooked up 5,000 free meals at a time from discarded vegetables for passers-by in London, Bristol and Manchester. 
The publicity stunts were arranged by an organisation called The Gleaning Network, which enlists volunteers to pick unwanted 'wonky' vegetables from farmers' fields, with their permission. 
One volunteer for The Gleaning Network, Leejiah Dorward, 26, said he lived 'almost 100 per cent' from bins for six months when he was volunteering full-time for a wildlife charity. 
The environmental activist, from Ashford, Kent, launched his experiment after first taking food from bins six years ago. 
He said he wanted to speak out in favour of the practice after last week's controversy - adding food waste was a far bigger crime. 
'I kept a spreadsheet and at the end I'd taken 238kg of food,' he said. 'It was worth £890, all of it good food and all of it from one tiny branch of one supermarket. 
'If people look at me funnily I turn round and offer them some food. I say, "these crisps went out of date today - they're fine". Or I'll fish in and pull out a bag of bananas that are still green. 
'I would always wear hi-viz as I didn't want to be seen as that person going round the back of the shop. In my view I've got nothing to hide. 
'Once I had five police cars with lights blazing turn up on me. They mounted the kerb and were shouting "stay still!" 
'They went through my bags, took all my details - then checked everything was out of date, which it was, and just said "good on you, nice one". 
'I think if the case last week had gone to court it would've made me more wary talking about it. There's a limit to what I'm going to do for what I believe is right. 
'But there's nothing immoral about it, whereas some things are legal but immoral.' 
He added: 'This is just a tiny fraction of it. You don't see the stuff that's left in fields - misshapen veg that the supermarkets don't want. About 30 per cent of food globally doesn't end up on our plates.' 
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2551810/Astonishing-haul-food-grabbed-supermarket-bin-just-10-minutes-skip-divers-tempted-eat-it.html#ixzz2taZGoHdG  
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Catch the organic buzz..

Published: 14 Feb 2014

Last month, Pune saw its very own organic farmers' market. The event was jam-packed with customers jostling to buy any and all products, as long as there was an organic tag to it. Organic is the new buzzword in our country. Mumbai, Chennai and Gurgaon, among other cities, have a regular organic farmers' market. Every city and large town has either got an organic food store or a weekly/monthly organic food market. So what is organic food and why is there is such a hype around it suddenly? 
Organic produce is grown using an agriculture system that is good for the soil, the ecosystem, the environment, the farmer as well as the consumers. Organic farming uses natural fertilisers such as compost or manure, beneficial insects, birds and other non-chemical tactics to manage and reduce pests. Environment-friendly measures are used for weed control such as rotating crops, using mulch and removing weeds by hand instead of spraying chemical pesticides. 
Till the 20th century, all agricultural produce was organic. It was only with the increase in world population, appetite and demand that there was a change in agricultural methods with the increased use of chemical based fertilisers and synthetic pesticides. 
The organic food market is growing rapidly. World organic food sales jumped from $23 billion in 2002 to $52 billion in 2008, with the numbers growing every day. The global organic market has been growing by 20 per cent a year since 1990s, with future growth estimate of 10-50 per cent annually. 
Organic products almost always cost 10-40 per cent more than similar non-organical products. Organic fruits and vegetables specially cost more because the farming tactics used to keep food free from chemical residues are costlier and more labour-intensive. One study from the Danish Environmental Protection Agency found that, area-for-area, organic farms of potatoes, sugar beet and seed grass produce as little as half the output of conventional farming. 
Produce grown in the conventional method of farming is typically sprayed with synthetic pesticides, grown with chemical fertilisers, treated with waxes and fungicides to preserve freshness, or irradiated to kill potentially harmful bacteria. Sometimes, food colouring is used to improve the look on store shelves. These pesticides don't always wash off, as there is always some residue left. 
No matter what the cost, organic farming is the way of the future. A 2007 study concluded that "organic methods could produce enough food on a global per capita basis to sustain the current human population, and potentially an even larger population, without increasing the agricultural land base." And as the demand rises, the supply will too, which will ensure a drop in prices. So buy organic no matter what the cost. After all, our health is the most important aspect of our life. 
Some trivia: In the US, a food can be labelled as "organic" only if it contains a minimum of 95 per cent organic ingredients. In most countries, organic produce should not contain genetically modified organisms. 
In the US, organic food sales have grown by 17 to 206 per cent a year for the past few years while sales of conventional food have grown at only about two to three per cent a year. 
Fruits and vegetables that are typically lowest in pesticide residues include thick-skinned tropical fruits like avocados, mangoes, pineapple, papaya and bananas. 
Fruits and vegetables that have the highest detectable levels of pesticide residues that should always be purchased organic include celery, peaches, apples, strawberries and leafy greens.  
Courtesy of My Digital FC: http://www.mydigitalfc.com/foods-and-drinks/catch-organic-buzz-stay-tune-future-179

Miller joins Capespan as manager

Published: 12 Feb 2014

Ex-Angus Soft Fruits man one of several high-profile appointments as Capespan continues to re-establish its UK activity. 
James Miller is settling into life at Capespan UK as senior account manager after joining from Angus Soft Fruits. 
The recruitment follows a number of recent high-profile appointments as Capespan continues to re-establish its activity in the UK.  
Miller will be responsible for managing leading UK retail accounts and brand and business development. 
Hazel Akehurst, head of sales and marketing, said: "We are delighted James is joining us. He comes with a wealth of experience managing top retail accounts and will give us important extra strength in our growing success, managing both our direct and added value accounts. 
"The UK fresh produce industry continues to evolve and Capespan has demonstrated its ability to develop with this. We are now a fully integrated farm to customer supplier and we are finding increasing interest in our new business model." 
Capespan underwent a change in shareholding last year, and now has a simplified shareholder structure with Zeder investments acquiring the shares held by exiting Total Produce. 
Miller began his new role in January. 
Courtesy of Fresh Produce Journal: http://bit.ly/1cvEDub

The Soil Association Organic Innovation Award 2014

Published: 10 Feb 2014

The Soil Association's brand new Organic Innovation Award 2014 - part of the Natural and Organic Products Europe (NOPE) annual awards - is open for entries! 
The NOPE awards, hosted in association with the Soil Association, have become the benchmark for excellence and set the standard for innovation, quality and commitment in the natural and organic sector.Winners achieve not just kudos and industry respect but also gain a huge competitive advantage from displaying the winning logo on their products or in communications relating to their business. 
The Soil Association Organic Innovation Award 2014 is a new award, introduced to recognise the breadth of new ideas, processes and products which are being introduced within the organic industry on an annual basis. This could include a new range of products, a new marketing campaign, a new fixturisation in store etc. 
The winner will have developed and launched a new concept or idea during the previous 12 months, and the positive impact of their innovation will have been seen in the market. Entries are welcome from all sectors (e.g. food, textiles, health and beauty) and operators within the organic industry, including multiple and independent retailers, processors, brands and marketing initiatives. 
Judging will take place before the show with the overall winner announced at the event.  
Courtesy of: FarmingUK: http://bit.ly/1bivpH0

WRAP to roll out 'money saving' scheme to 10 cities

Published: 6 Feb 2014

A food waste communications campaign which WRAP claims to have saved the West London Waste Authority up to £8 for every £1 of investment, is set to be rolled out in 10 cities across the UK. 
The roll out was announced today (February 5) by Dr Liz Goodwin, WRAP's chief executive, at the Fresher for Longer conference which took place in London. Fresher for Longer falls under the Love Food Hate Waste campaign and educates consumers about how to maximise the shelf life of food to reduce wastage. 
The decision to roll out the campaign comes even though WRAP itself has cast doubt on the validity of the financial benefits measured in West London. 
In the past, WRAP has revealed that its findings were based on a select survey with specific members of the public who might have cut their food waste because they were taking part in the survey (see letsrecycle.com story). 
Addressing the audience at today's event, Dr Goodwin claimed that WRAP will continue to prioritise food waste despite the organisation "evolving to diversify its funding base" as it scopes out the possibility of attaining charity status (see letsrecycle.com story). 
Commenting on the new campaign, Dr Goodwin said: "Last year a recent Love Food Hate Waste campaign run by the London Waste and Recycling Board, GLA, WRAP and the West London Waste Authority helped residents reduce avoidable food waste by 14% in just six months, saving up to £8 for the Authorities for every £1 spent on the campaign. A welcome return on investment in these difficult times. 
"Over the next 2 years, this model will be rolled out by WRAP across 10 cities nationwide, creating more opportunities for significant food waste reductions in the UK. We will be talking to local authorities in those areas identified, along with retailers and brands to come together to deliver the campaigns making a real difference to communities and levels of food waste across the country." 
At present the local authorities, retailers and brands involved have not been finalised but WRAP said the cities involved would be "highest population areas" to ensure the campaign has the biggest possible impact. 
Also speaking at the event, resource minister Dan Rogerson highlighted the savings consumers and councils could reap by wasting less food. He said: "In the UK annual households food waste has decreased by 15%, or 1.3 million tonnes, since 2007 but UK householders still waste about £12.5 billion a year, which is about £50 a month for the average family. £6.7 billion is due to food not used in time and we think this is due to avoidable food waste, food which wasn't eaten when it could have been. The rest of this food waste we think of as unavoidable such as bones, tea bags and so on which will always have to dispose of. 
"That food waste means that we might have fewer pounds in our pockets than we might have and the energy and water used to produce the food have been wasted and the transportation and packaging costs have been wasted. What happens to wasted food can also have significant financial and environmental costs and my colleagues in local government are very much aware of them." 
He added that packaging has an important role to play in reducing the amount of food wasted and that the whole supply chain has a part to play by helping to use resources more efficiently. 
Summing up Mr Rogerson said: "I would heartily encourage retailers, councils and others to be fully committed in delivering the Fresher For Longer campaign. It is innovative, it seeks to minimise food waste and save both money and valuable resources for consumers, industry and tax payers alike." 
WRAP has set an ambition to reduce food waste arisings by 50% by 2025. Dimitra Rappou, from the North London Waste Authority, questioned Mr Rogerson as to why the government did not use the Waste Prevention Plan to set a target for food waste reduction. 
In response, Mr Rogerson said that it was the government's preferred approach not to set targets. He said: "There has been an approach across government not to set targets and to focus on outcomes and the objectives that we have set. 
"That is the potential benefit there is for us to achieve and to tackle that amount of food that is wasted. Rather than to set a target which could or might act as a sort of distorting mechanism we chose to look at lots of multiple outcomes that we want to achieve. As a minister given the great number of responsibilities I have and the limited amount of money we have as a government to do things, increasingly we have to look at achieving multiple outcomes with one bit of money." 
Courtesy of letsrecycle.com: http://www.letsrecycle.com/news/latest-news/compost/wrap-to-roll-out-2018money-saving2019-scheme-to-10-cities

42 Gallons Of Water To Make One Slice Of Pizza, And Other Facts We Need To Know

Published: 4 Feb 2014

News flash: It takes almost 42 gallons of water to make one single slice of pizza - 18 for the flour, 21 for the cheese and 2.5 for the sauce. And a pound of chocolate? A whopping 3170 gallons. 
A new guide, "Meet The Nexus: How Food, Water and Energy are Connected" by the GRACE Communications Foundation aims to help consumers better connect the dots to create a more sustainable world by linking the impact of the water, energy and foods we consume. 
Of course, for those of us living in drought-stricken California, the importance of water and it's connection to food, is not lost. With less than 6 inches of precipitation in 2013 in San Francisco and day after day of sunshine around the state, farmers and consumers alike are praying for rain. 
But the drought's connection to the energy we use is less easily seen by the untrained eye. 
"Even in a good water year, California's water system uses 20% of the state's electricity to get that water to farms, cities and towns," says Peter J. Hanlon, a Senior Research and Policy Analyst for GRACE Communications Foundation. Drought impacts lakes too, like Lake Mead, now in danger of leaving hydroelectric turbines at Hoover Dam high and dry, unable to produce power for its 1.3 million consumers. 
Another example of nexus thinking can be found when talking about food waste. Not only does throwing out our leftovers mean we toss 40 percent of our food into the trash in the U.S., it also means we waste 1/4 of all the water consumed in the country. Throwing out food also results in lost energy originally put into fertilizing, storing and transporting that food. 
The guide outlines ways consumers can positively impact the food, water, energy nexus. 
Reduce your food waste - buy less (and freeze extras). Learn more about "best by," "use by" and "sell by" dates - most do not indicate that food has gone "bad" or dangerous. 
Find out about how the farms you buy from save energy and water and reward their efforts by purchasing from them directly. 
Stop buying bottled water - the amount of fuel used to produce plastic bottles (even if you then recycle them) is enormous. 
Quit buying stuff - every unnecessary item you purchase diverts valuable energy and water resources and often just ends up in the trash. 
Think tanks, companies and universities have been discussing the linkages between food, water and energy for years, and the World Economic Forum in January focused on the "nexus" as a major area of concern for 2014. The GRACE guide, however, is perhaps the first to attempt to bring consumers into the conversation, relating the complexity of the nexus to everyday activities and meals. 
Courtesy of Forbes.com http://onforb.es/1inXmwu

Supermarkets to reveal food waste

Published: 29 Jan 2014

Major supermarkets have pledged to reveal the amount of food they discard in an effort to cut the millions of tonnes wasted every year. 
Asda, Sainsbury's and Morrisons, as well as Marks & Spencer, Waitrose and the Co-operative, will collectively release regular updates on the amount of food thrown out by stores from early next year, the British Retail Consortium (BRC) has announced. 
Tesco was the first of the supermarkets to release its figures, in October, revealing it generated 28,500 tonnes of food waste at its stores and distribution centres in the first six months of last year alone. 
It announced it was to drop some food promotions after finding that two-thirds of produce grown for bagged salad is wasted - 35% of it in the home. 
The retailer also found that 40% of apples are wasted, as are just under half of bakery items. 
Figures from the Government's waste reduction advisory body, Waste and Resources Action Programme (Wrap), say that 15 million tonnes of food are discarded every year in the UK. 
The BRC said the UK retail industry will announce a range of "ambitious" targets today, including a collective pledge to reduce absolute carbon emissions by 25% by 2020, "putting the industry well on course to meet the 80% overall target set by the UK Climate Change Bill". 
It said the supermarkets signed up to the initiative have committed to publish their data on food waste created at the retail stage, along with annual progress reports, and are working with consumers to help cut food waste in the home. 
Other new targets to be announced today include a commitment to reducing emissions from refrigeration gases by 80% by 2020, and to divert less than 1% of waste to landfill by the same year. 
BRC director general Helen Dickinson said: "Retailers in the UK have made significant progress in reducing their impact on the environment. I'm delighted that the signatories are pushing themselves to achieve against even more ambitious commitments, having gone above and beyond the last set of targets. 
"The strength of commitment is plain to see when you look at how much progress has been made in the last decade: for example, only 6% of waste was sent to landfill in 2013, down from 47% in 2005. But retailers will continue to keep this momentum going: they recognise that it makes business sense and delivers real environmental benefits as well as value for their customers." 
Environment Secretary Owen Paterson said: "This initiative has been very successful in showing how industry can reduce the environmental impact of the retail sector. 
"It also highlights how it is possible to grow businesses in a sustainable way that is not only good for the environment but for the economy as well." 
Wrap said it welcomed the BRC's initiative. 
A spokeswoman said: "Wrap knows this is an area that retailers understand is both important to their business and to their customers. 
"Wrap works with the BRC and the retail sector through the voluntary agreements, the Courtauld Commitment and the Sustainable Clothing Action Plan 2020 Commitment. By 2015, Wrap envisages both agreements will have made a significant contribution to reducing the environmental footprint of grocery and clothing products. 
"We believe this latest initiative will continue to drive the retail industry and we look forward to continuing our strong relationships with the sector to help ensure its delivery." 
Courtesy of news.uk.msn: http://news.uk.msn.com/supermarkets-to-reveal-food-waste-1

Tesco invests £15 million in Eat Happy Project to teach kids about food

Published: 28 Jan 2014

Tesco has launched a new food education programme that will teach children about food and where it comes from. 
The supermarket said it is investing £15 million this year in rolling out the Tesco Eat Happy Project which will include a series of initiatives designed to improve children's relationship with food. 
The project's first initiative Farm to Fork, which is backed by Diabetes UK, the Children's Food Trust and the NFU, will see one million primary school children go on educational trails in factories, farms and in supermarkets for practical demonstrations of where food comes from and how it is made. 
Tesco said the project is aiming to take one million of the five million primary school children in the UK on the Farm to Fork trails in its first year. 
Classes will also have the opportunity to talk to food suppliers across the world through Google+ hangouts and live video chats, using Google's Connected Classrooms. Tesco is also partnering with Sorted Food, Europe's largest social media cooking channel to engage children with content that makes cooking fun and accessible. 
The project launches as new research commissioned by Tesco from the Future Foundation reveals that even though 90% of children say they know which foods are healthy, fewer than 10% achieve their five-a-day target. More than half (52%) believe potatoes count towards the total, and one in ten also count carrot cake. 
Tesco UK managing director Chris Bush said: "We know parents are concerned that kids don't always understand how food is made and where it comes from, which is important to developing a strong positive lifelong relationship with food. Working closely with teachers, our suppliers and a number of partners including the Children's Food Trust, we want to help make the relationship primary school kids have with food better, and that's the aim of the Eat Happy Project. It's part of our ambition to help all of our customers and colleagues lead healthier lives and just one of the ways we are using our scale to help communities across the UK." 
The second phase of The Tesco Eat Happy Project, to launch later in the year, will involve cookery courses for children in stores, working with the Children's Food Trust. 
Courtesy of the Retail Bulletin: http://www.theretailbulletin.com/news/tesco_invests_15_million_in_happy_eat_project_to_teach_kids_about_food_28-01-14/

Start-ups, organizations take on America's food waste challenge

Published: 27 Jan 2014

According to the USDA, 30 to 40 percent of the food produced in America goes uneaten. Mona Iskander reports from West Virginia on how new businesses have emerged to help kitchens reduce food waste while turning a profit. 
Click here to see the video: http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/environment/jan-june14/foodwaste_01-26.html 
Courtesy of pbs.org

Climate change will hike food prices

Published: 24 Jan 2014

Food prices will rise by around five per cent in 2050 due to the impact of climate change on crops, according to a new study in journal Agricultural Economics. 
The report, by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), in Germany, warns of "drastic increases" in food prices as the agri-industries adapt to climate change by switching land to energy crop production instead of food. 
But it concluded that global food markets would be more affected by unmitigated climate change than by an increased bio-energy demand. 
Researchers used models to anticipate a scenario when expansion of the bioenergy sector will be part of a global effort to reduce emissions. 
Christopher Schmitz, leader of research on cropland, said the world would require 320 million hectares of cropland in 2050, instead of about 200 million. 
He warned that most of the demand for new cropland would be from South America and Sub-Saharan Africa. 
He said: "This could be bad news as in those regions, in order to gain additional cropland, centuries-old rainforests are cut down. 
"This does not only increase carbon emissions but also harms biodiversity and threatens important ecosystem services." 
Lead researcher Christoph Müller said potential climate change impacts on crop yields are strong but vary widely across regions and crops. 
He said that a more flexible global agricultural trading system would be needed to ensure that areas that see increases in production can help compensate for those areas that see steep falls in agricultural yields. 
Courtesy of Fresh Produce Journal: http://www.fruitnet.com/fpj/article/160480/climate-change-will-hike-food-prices

War and waste pose food risks for future

Published: 22 Jan 2014

When it comes to feeding the world, there are two big worries for authorities and aid agencies. 
Conflicts and disasters in Africa and Syria and the emergency efforts to relieve hunger regularly make headlines. But the problem of people not getting proper access to food due to the twin problems of food loss through inefficient production and food waste - where developed nations throw away perfectly adequate food due to excess - is of much bigger concern. 
According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the UN, the amount of food that is never consumed is as high in industrialized countries as it is in developing countries. However, in developing countries more than 40 percent of that total occurs at the production level. But in developed countries, an equal percentage is due to food that is simply thrown away by either retailers or consumers. 
According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the UN, the world wastes a staggering 1.3 billion tonnes of food per year. 
"Food waste at consumer level in industrialized countries (222 million ton) is almost as high as the total net food production in sub-Saharan Africa (230 million ton)," the report concluded. 
"Per capita, food wasted by consumers in Europe and North-America is 95-115 kg/year, while this figure in sub-Saharan Africa and South/Southeast Asia is only 6-11 kg/year." 
Such a huge waste is taking a toll on the world's resources - and economy. 
FAO Agro-Industry Officer Robert van Otterdijk told CNBC that there was a huge risk to the planet. 
"Both food loss and waste reflect a huge waste of natural resources and may cause climate change," he said. "All this food has been produced, and it is wasted and not used. That is a great shame to the use of natural resources." 
The FAO's own research found that without accounting for greenhouse gas emissions from land use change, the carbon footprint of food produced and not eaten is estimated at 3.3 G tonnes of CO2 - making it the third top emitter of greenhouse gases after the U.S. and China. 
"Food wastage reduction would not only avoid pressure on scarce natural resources but also decrease the need to raise food production by 60 percent in order to meet the 2050 population demand," the report stated. 
Food loss due to the production process is down to financial, managerial and technical limitations in harvesting, storage, infrastructure, packaging and marketing. The FAO wants to solve this byencouraging small farmers to organize, diversify and upscale their production and marketing, along with investments in infrastructure, transportation, processing and packaging. The FAO along with the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the WFP recently launched a joint $2.7 million project funded by the Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation to target food losses in developing countries. 
Food waste came into the spotlight last year when Tesco, the U.K.'s largest retailer by sales, hit the headlines after the company revealed that it generated 28,500 tons of food waste in the first six months of the year. The supermarket and not-for-profit company Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) said that Tesco's waste problem was part of a much larger issue, with the company estimating that 15 million tons of food and drink were simply thrown away each year across the U.K. 
Tesco, using its own data and industry-wide figures, also estimated that across the U.K. food industry as a whole, 68 percent of salad to be sold in bags was wasted, with 35 percent of it thrown out by customers. 
It's not just the retailers but the consumers too who are throwing away their food. The consequences of this for the wider food market are not yet known, although van Otterdijk and the FAO are investigating the matter and will release findings later this year. 
For Greg Barrow, who heads the WFP's liaison office in London, the main concern is evident. "What happens is that if a lot of food is being wasted and…what this does is it creates a situation where the food that is available is more expensive and less people are able to get it," he said."One could say that if the population grows at the rate it does and the world continues to waste as much food as it does, then ultimately somewhere down the line it could manifest itself in terms of a shortage." 
The problem is how the Western world combats food waste. Barrow argued that while the FAO can attempt to change the production process in the developing world, it can only highlight the food waste issue with industrialized nations. "It's not like they're (the FAO) going to suddenly appear on the high street in London and tell people what to do in terms of buying one bag of salad as opposed to two," he said. "That's really for government policy makers to decide." 
Howard Buffett, the son of the American business magnate, Warren, established the Howard G. Buffett Foundation (HGBF) in 1999 to improve the standard of living and quality of life for the world's most impoverished people. He agreed that food waste back in the U.S. and Europe was a key area of debate in the coming years. 
"I get frustrated when I walk into a movie theatre and the first thing I see is that I can super-size my soda for $2. I don't want to!" he said exasperatedly. "That's going to become a bigger debate in this country about people's habits…I think it's a stretch to say that's going to have an effect on global food prices any time soon, but over time…it will have some impact, eventually." 
—By CNBC's Kiran Moodley http://www.cnbc.com/id/101337631

Cut waste to enjoy a trip to the sun

Published: 20 Jan 2014

Everyone's attention is turning to booking summer holidays and Fylde Council recycling staff say there is an easy way to pay. 
It is never easy to save money, but research shows that wasted food and drink costs the average British family £60 a month. 
Principal waste development officer Sarah Wilson said: "The equivalent of 86m chickens are wasted from British homes every year. It is money that we could all use better on saving for luxuries like holidays rather than throwing good money away. 
"Recycling containers for food have cut food waste by 21 per cent since 2007 and that is a huge step in the right direction. But there is still far more that many of us could do. 
"The main foods being thrown away are fruit, vegetables and bakery goods - and the main reason is that they are past their use-by dates or that we have cooked more than we can eat. 
"There are simple things we can all do that could save the average family £420 by the summer: the simplest is just to plan means, check cupboards and write a shopping list to avoid buying too much. 
"Getting portion sizes right and using any leftovers for the next day's meal are very easy money-saving ideas that will boost the family coffers. 
"Correct storage of food will keep it fresh longer while freezing things that are within 24 hours of their use-by date will also avoid waste. Ignoring basic housekeeping lessons like this is like putting your money into the bin." 
For further information on food waste including top tips on how to waste less and save more, please visit www.lovefoodhatewaste.com or download the app.

BOGOF deals 'exacerbate' food waste problem

Published: 17 Jan 2014

Buy-one-get-one-free deals and other discounts promoted by supermarkets 'exacerbate' the amount of food waste generated in the UK, according to the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IME). 
However, retailers have previously fought back at similar accusations with the British Retail Consortium claiming that supermarket special-offers causing food waste has been exposed as a 'myth' (see letsrecycle.com story). 
A survey undertaken on behalf of the Institution found that of 2,023 consumers polled this month, 70% said supermarkets urged them to buy more with 45% doing so. These shoppers said that BOGOF deals and half price promotions were the major ways supermarkets attracted them. 
The results show that a fifth of the people polled wasted or threw away more than 10% of the food they bought over Christmas and New Year. However, 41% of people said they wasted less than 10% of food and more than a third said they did not waste any food. 
Commenting on the findings, Dr Tim Fox, head of energy and the environment at IME, said that it would be wrong to lay all of the blame with supermarkets but discounting methods did "exacerbate" the problem. 
He said: "This latest survey shows that UK shoppers still feel they are encouraged to buy too much food, despite significant progress on raising awareness of food waste in 2013, and some retailer action to reduce over-purchasing. 
"There are various reasons why around a third to a half of all food produced in the world never reaches a human stomach, and while it would be wrong to lay all of the blame for waste with the supermarkets - deals like Buy-One-Get-One-Free, 'half price' offers and various other price discounting methods do exacerbate the problem." 
The IME's findings come a year after it published 'Global Food; Waste Not, Want Not' report which outlined the global food waste problem and potential ways to tackle it. It estimated that between 30-50% of all food produced globally is wasted - with discounts, confusion regarding date labelling and consumer demand for cosmetically pleasing produce among reasons cited for food waste. 
Dr Fox added that it is important that everybody, from consumers, to retailers and the government takes action to reduce the amount of food wasted. 
This has been recognised by supermarket giant Tesco which released details of its own food waste tonnages in October 2013 (see letsrecycle.com story). In a bid to tackle the issue, Tesco announced a number of initiatives to reduce food waste across the supply chain, including ending multi-buys on large bags of salad and developing 'mix and match' promotions to allow shoppers greater flexibility. 
Other retailers are taking steps to improve under the Courtauld Commitment - a voluntary waste reduction agreement for the grocery sector. 45 signatories signed up to the third phase of the Commitment which launched in May 2013 (see letsrecycle.com story) which includes a target to reduce household food and drink waste by 5% in tonnage terms against a 2012 baseline. 
Environmental policy adviser for the British Retail Consortium (BRC) Alice Ellison said the key aim for retailers was to minimise waste. 
"WRAP evidence shows that the link between promotions and food waste is actually very small. The main method of promotions is cutting the price rather than Buy One Get One Free offers, which are rare for fresh products but one of a range of choices offering value to customers. 
"Cutting waste is one of the primary challenges for sustainability, but that process is underway. Consumers have cut over a million tonnes of food waste since 2007 and retailers have made great progress reducing waste in their supply chains. Excellent collaboration between retailers, their suppliers and customers is meeting challenging targets agreed with all four UK Governments." 
She added: "The key aim is to make it easier for us all to minimise waste. That means using more of what farmers produce, clear storage labelling, re-sealable packaging, advice on freezing and better understanding of the difference between a best before and use by date. All this work is well underway, and retailers will continue to do more." 
Love Food Hate Waste 
Related Links 
Institution of Mechanical Engineers 
At present, the Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP) estimates that 4.2 million tonnes of household food is thrown away every year, which could have been eaten (see letsrecycle.com story). However, households have cut avoidable food waste by 21% since 2007. 
One way WRAP have targeted consumer food waste is through communications campaign Love Food Hate Waste which aims to raise awareness of food waste and the importance of reducing it. It provides consumers with tips, recipes and storage advice to reduce the amount of food waste and has been launched by a number of local authorities. 
Courtesy of LetsRecycle.com

Co-operative Group lends helping hand to food waste with compostable bags

Published: 16 Jan 2014

The Co-operative Group is rolling out compostable carrier bags to hundreds of its stores nationwide, in what it claims is an industry first.  
The bags, which can be reused as food waste caddy liners, will be available in around 400 stores covering 81 local authority areas with food recycling schemes which require householders to use compost bags of food waste.  
The company says that it is the first time a large-scale food retailer has given shoppers over such a wide area the option of alternative carrier bags with a specific second use.  
It has already trialled the new bags in selected regions, and the pilots have been deemed a success. At just 6p each they work out at around half the price of food waste caddy liners bought on a roll.  
According to the Co-operative food's environment manager, Iain Ferguson, every compostable carrier bag used is one less conventional plastic shopping bag in circulation.  
"We believe they will have a significant impact upon the number of plastic bags which end up in landfill sites every year," he commented.  
The retailer is working hard to reduce the number of single-use bags given out in stores - last year it used 64% fewer bags in its stores than in 2006, when industry-wide reduction targets were first set.  
The new compostable carrier bags, which carry the seedling logo and are certified to the EN13432 standard, are made from a combination of natural materials.  
The Co-operative also believes that the new compostable carrier bags could play a vital role in encouraging more people to recycle food waste.  
"We are the only major food retailer in the UK to offer carrier bags which are also compostable and carry the seedling logo. Our aim is to enable our customers to recycle more of the products they buy from us," he said.  
Maxine Perella 
Courtesy of Edit.Net http://www.edie.net/news/5/Co-operative-Group-lends-helping-hand-to-food-waste-with-compostable-bags-/

'Ugly food' worth £19bn is dumped every year in Britain

Published: 11 Jan 2014

- Up to two fifths of crops never make it on to plates so used as animal feed 
- Previously rules against misshapen food for fear people wouldn't buy them 
- Rules lifted but consumers still reluctant to buy items like bent cucumbers 
Food is still being wasted in massive quantities because people are unwilling to buy 'ugly' produce such as misshapen cucumbers, experts have said. 
Fifteen million tonnes of food worth more than £19billion is thrown away in Britain every year, left to rot in the fields, discarded by supermarkets and restaurants and thrown into household bins. 
Up to two fifths of fruit or vegetable crops never make it on to plates because they are not acceptable to consumers. 
Shoppers are still unprepared to accept food in odd sizes or shapes, leaving farms to use perfectly edible produce as animal feed or plough it back into the ground. 
Professor Charles Godfray of the University of Oxford said this week: 'One of the greatest drags on making progress is not so much regulation but how one views waste. 
'Consumers themselves are still reluctant to buy misshapen cucumbers and things like that.' 
He said that despite 2009 changes in EU marketing regulations to make it easier to sell misshapen products, shops are still unable to make them sell. 
'The industry maintained its previous standards because they were worried about consumer reception,' he told a House of Lords inquiry into the issue. 
'I don't think we completely have the public with us on the importance of what food waste is.' 
Britain is facing a crisis in food security, he warned, with a growing population increasingly relying on imported food to meet its needs. 
Some 40 per cent of the country's food is now imported - leaving shoppers reliant on a fragile food supply chain that could be torn apart by foreign floods or droughts. 
Professor Tim Benton, professor of population ecology at Leeds University, told the committee: 'The demands on the food system are getting greater, and greater, and greater. 
'It is difficult to imagine us growing our way into food security, just by producing more and more. 
'Somehow we have to get our heads around the demand side of food - and part of that is the issue of waste.' 
Citing statistics from the food sustainability organisation Wrap, Prof Benton added: 'We waste food which is approximately equivalent to the land area of production of 91 per cent of Wales.' 
Prof Benton said ultimate responsibility for waste has to lie with shoppers. 
'Consumers say the supermarkets govern what we eat,' he said. 
'Supermarkets say, no, no, the consumer governs what we give you. 
'And the Government tends to stand back and say it's nothing to do with us, it's the market. 
'At the end of the day all of the power has to rest with the consumer - but every single consumer is disempowered because they are just a tiny cog in the wheel.' 
He said the only answer was a 'change in culture throughout the food system, from consumers through manufacturers to producers on the farm'. 
Last month (DEC) Matt Simister, food sourcing director at Tesco, said supermarkets maintain high product standards because that is what shoppers want. 
Mr Simister said: 'The standards are there because that's what customers tell us they want in their perishable produce. 
'Customers naturally select, they always pick the cream of crop first and the rest of it then gets left. 
'Then the new deliveries come in and you have the new cream of the crop - the old, ugly misshapen produce goes to waste. 
'Customers will always make the choice of the one that cosmetically looks better. That's a very difficult reality to us.' 
Courtesy of the Daily Mail 
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2537557/Ugly-food-worth-19bn-dumped-year-Britain-consumers-unwilling-buy-misshapen-products.html#ixzz2qIYVbG4C  
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Perception of food waste must change, inquiry told

Published: 9 Jan 2014

Retailers are delivering the wrong message to consumers in the fight against food waste, experts warned a House of Lords sub-committee today (January 8). 
Tim Benton, professor of population ecology at the University of Leeds, and Professor Charles Godfray, director of the Oxford Martin programme on the Future of Food, argued that the 'throwaway culture' was being reinforced by offers for low cost goods that can be easily produced. 
However, they conceded 'positive steps' had been made over the past ten years, and commended supermarket giant Tesco for 'bravely' announcing its UK food waste arisings for the first half of 2013 in October (see letsrecycle.com story). 
The two experts gave evidence as part of an ongoing inquiry into the European Union's contribution to food waste prevention currently being carried out by the House of Lords' agriculture, fisheries, environment and energy sub-committee. The inquiry was launched in August last year (see letsrecycle.com story). 
Chaired by Lord Cameron of Dillington, it aims to establish how best to approach food waste, how to define food waste and the feasibility of monitoring the problem - which sees an estimated 89 million tonnes thrown away across the continent each year. 
Professor Benton said: "The issue really is about behavioural change in the home and discussion of what the definition of food waste is. The Waste & Resources Action Programme has been world leading in changing the public perception of food waste across the UK. 
"All of the change has got to rest with the consumer, but the consumer is not going to change their behaviour unless they are informed. We need to stop giving the impression that food is something that can be bought or produced or gift-wrapped easily." 
Professor Benton added there was a 'tension' between the safety aspects and the waste aspects of what constituted food waste, such as whether certain types of food waste should be fed to pigs. 
When asked whether retailers could do more to inform consumers, Professor Godfray said while he did not wish to undermine Professor Benton's arguments, he believed some measures - such as an end to BOGOF deals on alcohol in Scotland, or the arrival of 'virtual shopping' where consumers were more selective about what food they purchased - had shown retailers were willing to change. 
Professor Godfray said: "We do not have the public completely with us on food waste, but the UK is pretty good on this compared to the rest of Europe - in general we are going in the right direction but I share the committee's frustration, it would be better to progress quicker." 
He added: "There is a general feeling that the way we label food at the moment is giving a confusing message to the consumer. This is something we want the EU to look into." 
The sub-committee is due to report its findings and recommendations to the House in March. 
Courtesy of letsrecycle.com : http://bit.ly/1igPg8x

Sentry conference to debate key food issues

Published: 8 Jan 2014

Gather a group of farmers together to name the most pressing agricultural issues of the moment and no doubt most would arrive at similar answers. 
Whilst they may differ over their importance, surely CAP reform, employment, price volatility, or the ethics of renewable energy over food security would all feature. 
In recent years a lot of farming conferences have focussed on two of these - planning and preparing for the impact of a dramatic projected growth in the world's population and the vagaries of climate change. 
At this year's Sentry conference our speakers will be addressing the theme, New Frontiers - Shaping the future. Our endeavour is to look beyond the "what if" and assume "when". 
We will see how businesses have structured to benefit from that projected population growth and how they mitigate the risk of climate change and commodity market volatility. 
In addition, we will address the pertinent issues of food waste, government policy in times of austerity and how we attract and prepare future employees and managers. 
We often read that China is dominating global trade, but what does that mean for UK farmers? The experiences of AB Sugar, a company that has grown a business in China, contrasted with its expansion in Africa, will give an invaluable insight. 
Closer to home we may be more familiar with the scale and soil of farms in Eastern Europe, but not necessarily with what the greatest challenges are to running a business there. Spearhead chief executive officer Tom Green will describe its large farming operation in Poland, the Czech Republic and Romania. 
It is important to understand what are the main drivers to global markets. No longer can we make decisions solely on the UK's parochial experience. 
Thorsten Tiedemann heads global trade for Toepfer International. We will we hear his current opinion on the market and also learn about the influence of outside fund investment in global commodities. 
The topic of new entrants is often aired but seldom do we assess how well we are preparing those that enter farming and food supply for the world of work. David Llewellyn, vice chancellor of Harper Adams University is perfectly placed share his wealth of experience on the subject of attracting and preparing them. 
As a farming industry our challenge is to react to the market, producing more from limited resources whilst addressing the sustainability of our farming practices. But seldom do we consider influencing the externality of food waste. 
The EU wastes an estimated 80m tonnes of food annually. Tristram Stuart, a food waste expert, will expand on what he sees as the greatest barrier to changing attitudes towards wasting food. 
Finally, preparing any business for a global market place must always account for adapting to changes in government policy. Maria Eagle was appointed shadow secretary of state for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs in the autumn reshuffle. 
In the aftermath of the reforms of the CAP and with an election planned for next year, she will discuss how we can create a resilient, growing food industry. 
Conference speakers 
Mark Carr, chief executive officer, AB Sugar. New frontiers, but where next? - an insight into AB Sugar in the UK and how the changing economies in China and Africa are influencing its work. 
Tom Green, chief executive officer Spearhead International. Scale matters - the European perspective; the background to European farming group Spearhead International, its experiences in Eastern Europe, and what he sees as the greatest drivers in the future. 
David Llewellyn, vice chancellor of Harper Adams University. The workforce of the future - the challenges of preparing our future workforce - how and what has changed, the type of people coming forward, and where he sees the greatest threat. 
Tristram Stuart, chief executive officer, Feeding the 5,000. Does waste hold the key to the solution? An environmental award winner for his work fighting food waste, Tristram will assess how the world looks at waste and its relevance to the agricultural community. 
Thorsten Tiedmann, executive general manager, global trade, Toepfer International. International volatility is opportunity - an overview of the grain market and how outside fund investment influences market volatility. 
Maria Eagle, shadow secretary of state for environment, food and rural affairs. Feeding the nation - how can we create a resilient, growing food industry? 
Conference details 
Theme? New Frontiers - Shaping the Future 
When? Wednesday, 5 February 2014, 9am 
Where? The Rowley Mile Racecourse, Newmarket, Suffolk CB8 0TF 
How much? Champions Gallery tickets - sold out. Millennium Suite tickets £80 + VAT (£96) per person 
Cheques payable to: Sentry Limited - Conference Account. Send to Conference Office, Sentry Ltd, The Hall, Willisham, Ipswich, Suffolk IP8 4SL, or contact Jo Woods on 01473 812010 or email jow@sentry.co.uk; or Linda Linton on 01473 812015 or email lindal@sentry.co.uk 
Courtesy of Farmers Weekly: http://bit.ly/KI8dG4

F2F Events announces a new 'Love Natural Love Organic' show plans

Published: 7 Jan 2014

Exhibition organiser F2f Events will be launching a new three-day show in July running alongside The Allergy & Free From Show and V Delicious. 
The Love Natural Love Organic event will take place on 4-6 July in London Olympia's Grand Hall and will feature a range of ethical, natural and organic food, cosmetics, skin, body and hair care, clothing and accessories, household products and lifestyle items. 
F2f Events said the new show, which is being backed by the Organic Trade Board and Slow Food UK, will benefit from more than 22,000 visitors expected to attend the The Allergy & Free From Show and V Delicious. 
David McAllister, event director, said: "The best show launches are those for which there is a genuine desire from the market. Love Natural Love Organic is one such show. The exhibitor and visitor customers for our existing portfolio of consumer events have told us they want an organic and natural consumer show so we set about researching the market and were overwhelmed by the positive response.  
"Collocating Love Natural Love Organic with The Allergy & Free From Show and V Delicious gives the event an instant guarantee of over 22,000 visitors, most of whom, our research has shown, are serious, affluent buyers of organic and natural products". 
Courtesy of the Event Magazine: http://bit.ly/1krSxGK

Council Blunder sees food waste sent to Landfill

Published: 2 Jan 2014

CHRISTMAS dinner scraps across Edinburgh have been dumped in landfill instead of being recycled after city chiefs made an error with festive waste collections. 
Around eight tonnes of Yuletide food waste had to be diverted to the dump due to a "lack of appropriate storage" at the council's waste depot at Powderhall. 
Environment leaders have apologised for the blunder but critics say the department should launch a thorough investigation to ensure it is not repeated. 
It is thought the botched waste collection would have cost around £800. 
A waste department source said staff were "very unhappy" that truckloads of food scraps went to landfill on Saturday after families had painstakingly separated their recyclable material. 
The haul would have included unwanted grub from last week's festivities, including leftover pudding and turkey. 
The waste department source said: "We weren't told why but we don't think it's right that it happened. 
"Food waste is supposed to be a top priority for the council but I'm sure this is the second time it has happened in four years - that's a lot of food waste being dumped." 
The council collects around 2920 tonnes of food waste every year in a city that produces around 40,000 tonnes, according to 2008 statistics. 
It spends around £135,000 deposing of food waste at a recycling plant called Scottish Water Horizons in Cumbernauld, where it is used to generate renewable energy. 
Green environment spokesperson Councillor Chas Booth demanded full details were provided into "what went wrong". 
He said: "Collection and transportation is trickier at this time of year but it's not as if the council did not know the festive season was coming. 
"I'd really want to remind everyone that this is very much a one-off blunder and to keep using the food waste bins in 2014. 
"Food waste that is collected separately is kept away from landfill because it is better for the environment and better for council taxpayers through reduced landfill tax. 
"Incidents like this are a setback but should not deflect from the zero waste message." 
But environment convener Cllr Lesley Hinds said: "It was encouraging that so many people made the effort to recycle food waste last week, but the fact that much of it went to landfill anyway is extremely frustrating, and I apologise for what has happened. This was due to an error which resulted in a lack of the appropriate storage being available. 
"I will be contacting the waste department to make sure that this mistake does not happen again." 
Courtesy of the Edinburgh News: http://bit.ly/19LWDSZ

New recycling rules come into effect for Scottish businesses

Published: 1 Jan 2014

New rules on recycling waste have come into force for Scottish businesses. 
The Waste (Scotland) Regulations require waste to be separated into paper, card, plastic, metals and glass for collection. 
All food businesses producing more than 50kg of food waste each week must present it for separate collection, unless they are in a rural area. 
Those failing to comply with the new laws from 1 January risk a maximum fine of £10,000. 
The Scottish government, with its agency Zero Waste Scotland, recommends businesses should audit waste to see where most of it comes from, and contact their waste contractors about how best to arrange separate collections. 
Environment Secretary Richard Lochhead said the waste regulations represented "a significant step toward delivering our vision of a zero waste Scotland". 
"Our waste can be a valuable resource - but only when it is properly managed," he said. 
"These important regulations will help change the way we regard our waste. 
"We all have responsibilities when it comes to waste, not least the Scottish business community. Without their support, Scotland will not meet its zero waste ambitions." 
Iain Gulland, director of Zero Waste Scotland, said: "There's real value in our waste. It's estimated that businesses across Scotland could save up to £192m by reducing the amount of waste sent to landfill and recycling as much waste as possible." 
WWF Scotland, the environment pressure group, welcomed the introduction of the new regulations. 
Its director, Lang Banks, said: "Scotland currently pays tens of millions of pounds annually in landfill taxes to throw away millions of pounds worth of valuable materials that could and should be being recycled or composted. 
"Implemented well, these new rules will help cut waste, save money and resources, as well as create jobs. 
"Creating a zero waste society starts by creating less waste in the first place and by making better use of the resources we already have." 
Courtesy of the BBC News: http://bbc.in/1eXCn5o

This Year's 12 Greatest Strides towards reducing Food Waste

Published: 26 Dec 2013

The year of 2013 has been an exciting one for the future of food. Amidst moving to ban trans fats and demonstrating the threats of routinely using antibiotics in animal feed, the country woke up to the opportunity and moral obligation to waste less food. 
When I compare where the "food waste issue" is today with just one year ago, I'm floored by how much progress has been made. We'll need more progress to get more data to know just how much food was actually saved, but at least we can say with confidence that businesses, organizations, and everyday folks are more aware that letting 40 percent of the food in this country go uneaten just isn't cool. 
Even without sound data to document actual savings, here are twelve good reasons to think we made good progress in 2013 towards reducing food waste across the U.S. and beyond. 
The United Nations launched a targeted campaign: In January, the Think.Eat.Save. global campaign was launched by two branches of the United Nations and partners. The two year campaign aims to galvanize widespread action to reduce food waste. A toolkit was also launched as part of the associated FAO Save Food Initiative. 
11. USDA and EPA challenged the U.S. to act: In April, the USDA and EPA announced the U.S. Food Waste Challenge to "lead a fundamental shift in how we think about and manage food and food waste in this country." The challenge invites the food industry and other institutions to make commitments to reducing (i.e. preventing), recovering (i.e. donating), or recycling (i.e. composting, generating energy, feeding to animals) their food waste. As part of the Challenge, several branches of USDA took on specific projects, as have companies such as ConAgra, General Mills and Unilever. A variety of universities, sports teams and entertainment venues joined as well. See the list of participants and their goals here. 
10. A U.S. food waste awareness campaign was expanded: In April, it was decided that a small pilot project called Food: Too Good to Waste designed to tackle consumer household food waste will be scaled up to a national campaign by EPA and USDA. The project provides materials for municipalities or organizations to educate their local communities on how to waste less food in the home. Here in the San Francisco Bay Area, FoodShift succeeded in conducting a different campaign with banners, such as the one shown here, on public transit. 
9. Tesco announced a new focus: In May, stating "the volume of food wasted every year is simply breathtaking," the CEO of grocery giant Tesco announced one of its three long-term strategic Big Ambitions will be: To lead in reducing food waste globally. Since then, they have established a best practice "blueprint" of operational efficiencies that will be spread throughout their global operations, such as optimizing case sizes, reducing lead times for orders and improving in-store operations in bakeries. They also published third-party verified food waste data, developed new waste metrics, moved to a "one-date" labelling system and dropped buy-one-get-one-free promotions for some products. 
8. The UK announced more progress: In May, the Brits continued to lead the charge on reducing food waste with the announcement of Courtauld Commitment 3 -- the third phase of joint reduction targets set by 52 leading retailers, brands and manufacturers. In addition, they published a new report indicating a 21 percent drop in food wasted in households between 2007 and 2012, and have continued to grow a new project with the hospitality and food service industries. 
7. The Pope voiced his concern: In June, Pope Francis spoke out against wasting food on World Environment Day, denouncing what he called a "culture of waste" in an increasingly consumerist world. "Throwing away food is like stealing from the table of those who are poor and hungry," he said. "Our grandparents used to make a point of not throwing away leftover food. Consumerism has made us accustomed to wasting food daily and we are unable to see its real value." With a 1.2 billion strong Roman Catholic Church, the Pope's leadership on this issue is notable. 
6. The Food Waste Reduction Alliance forged ahead: In June, a combined initiative of the Food Marketing Institute, the Grocery Manufacturers Association and the National Restaurant Association, the Food Waste Reduction Alliance released their first survey (a step in improving data for those sectors), built a toolkit of best practices that's soon to be released and added a goal towards reducing waste at the source, in addition to their other goals of donating more food and diverting more scraps to compost or anaerobic digestion. 
5. Resource impacts were quantified: In September, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization released a report estimating that 28 percent of land in agriculture and water equal to three times the volume of Lake Geneva are being used to grow food that is never eaten, globally. If food wastage (as they call the combination of all food lost or wasted in the food system) were a country, it would rank third in greenhouse gas emissions after China and the U.S. 
4. Expiration dates were exposed: Also in September, The Dating Game report that NRDC, coauthored with the Harvard Food Law and Policy Clinic, did just what we hoped -- highlighted the mass misinterpretation of date labels on food that is leading to huge amounts of waste (in case you missed it, date labels have nothing to do with how safe your food is). Following that report, members of both government and the business community have indicated plans to improve upon the current confusing situation. I'm optimistic we will see action on this in 2014. 
3. Foundations were laid for better measurement: In October, the World Resources Institute, creators of the widely used Greenhouse Gas Protocol, announced plans to establish a similar protocol for measurement and reporting of food losses and waste. This is a critical step in laying the groundwork for standard measurement. This project will collaborate with EU FUSIONS, a European initiative across 13 countries aimed at developing a shared strategy towards reducing food waste, beginning with a standard approach to measurement and monitoring. 
2. Innovation abounded: I can't count the number of entrepreneurial ventures that have sprung up this year to capitalize on the opportunities created by food that's currently going to waste. Apps emerged at every level of the supply chain to enable those with surplus food to post instant alerts in an effort to find a buyer or donation recipient. Various products that extend shelf life came on to the market. And new business models, such as that put forth by the Daily Table, entered the scene. We're still waiting for that brilliant designer to create the next generation of refrigerator... 
People told me so: All the time. All year long. I couldn't go anywhere without someone proudly declaring to me they ate yoghurt after "the date" for the first time in their lives, or they used up some wilted broccoli in a stir fry. These little steps add up. The fact that people care is what is behind all of the change we saw in 2013, and will continue to be the foundation for it for years to come. 
Looking forward into 2014, the momentum seems that it will only continue. Massachusetts has proposed a solid waste disposal ban for organics (for both landfills and incineration) that would apply to entities disposing of one ton or more of food waste per week, beginning in July of 2014. WRI will move forward in earnest with its Global Food Loss and Waste Measurement Protocol. The EPA will launch their Food: Too Good to Waste campaign at a national level. And all of us, I hope, will continue on the journey to waste less in our own lives and invite the businesses and policy makers we engage with to join us. 
Courtesy of the Huffington Post: http://huff.to/JLjW5r

Reduce waste this Christmas

Published: 18 Dec 2013

For most of us, Christmas is a time of indulgence, particularly when it comes to food. I'll leave it up to you to decide how much you want to eat (after all, it is a special celebration!), but perhaps all of us should think carefully about how to make sure we don't waste food over the holiday. I remember one year when I had so much food it wouldn't all go in the fridge and I completely forgot I had hung a bag of it near the back door - of course I forgot I had put it there until I found a soggy, completely unusable mush a few weeks later. 
The latest research may show that we are wasting less food than we were 5 years ago, but we still waste nearly 20% of the food we buy (and that's not counting the unusable waste, such as chicken bones and banana skins). 
The Love Food Hate Waste website has lots of great ideas for avoiding food waste and great recipes for using up leftovers and have a great food waste advent calendar at the moment. 
It is so tempting to overbuy at Christmas - for all sorts of reasons. These are some of the reasons I do it: 
- I want to feel really generous, with an overflowing table - it seems the time for plenty. 
- Although the shops are not actually shut for very long (it's only on Christmas day itself that we can't buy things near our house), I always think "How awful if we should run out of anything!" and buy more than I need. 
- I get traditional foods that we only tend to eat over Christmas (Christmas pudding, mince pies, game pie, dates, lots of sweets and nuts…), but I still get the usual things we eat - somehow I don't buy an equivalent amount less of normal things. 
- I'm never quite sure how long people will stay and whether they'll require a second meal after a big lunch followed by lots of indulgent nibbling, so I have the second meal ready 'just in case'. 
You really would think I'd have learned by now - the good thing is that we don't normally actually throw away much food over the Christmas holiday, as we're pretty good at giving it away or cooking interesting dishes with leftovers, but we still eat more than usual at this time of year, which is wasteful in itself. I can feel a resolution coming on….. 
Using up the turkey isn't such a problem for me these days, now our children have children of their own - they are usually only too happy to take cartons of it away after the main meal! But here are some recipes for leftover turkey from the BBC website, just in case (they sound absolutely delicious!) 
Our family favourite when the children were small was blanquette of turkey which the children always insisted on calling 'turkey gunge', even though they absolutely loved it. 
On Christmas Eve we always have a German Christmas meal, cooked by our German son-in-law, who is vegetarian - he does the most wonderful nut roast with sugar-caramelised roast potatoes (courtesy of his Danish mother) and sweet-and-sour red cabbage(I often use sultanas, chopped apple, cider vinegar and honey for this - it's just a question of taste.) 
There's also the evening for the exchange of presents and dancing round the Christmas tree while singing carols - and the tree has real candles in the German tradition (no accidents yet!) 
Here are a few more vegan Christmas recipes from the Cambridge Carbon Footprint website (recipes for a Low Carbon Christmas), including the most delicious nut roast and onion gravy. 
A reminder about the other ways in which we can eat more sustainably: 
- eat less meat and dairy 
- eat seasonal local fruit and veg 
- eat only what you need 
- cook from scratch rather than eating ready meals 
And here are some delicious recipes using winter vegetables (such as spicy sautéed cavolo nero, which I absolutely love) from Cambridge Carbon Footprint, including some from the wonderful Tine Roche of the award-winning Cambridge Cookery School 
Do book now for Food for a Greener Future on February 8th - as well as having talks by national speakers, this will be a great celebration of local food, with demonstrations and tastings. 
Happy holidays - and wish me luck with my resolution not to overbuy this year! 
Courtesy of Bev Sedley at the Cambridge news: 
Read more: http://www.cambridge-news.co.uk/Homes-and-Gardens/Sustainable-food/Happy-holidays-avoiding-the-usual-food-waste-20131217122843.htm#ixzz2nov3a3qn

Broccoli brand in fight against hunger

Published: 16 Dec 2013

Tenderstem has announced that it will sponsor Action Against Hunger in 2014 to help support the humanitarian agency's work to end child hunger and acute malnutrition around the world. 
The sponsorship will contribute to vital emergency aid supplied by the organisation, and to the longer-term food security programmes it manages such as providing seeds and tools for agricultural recovery. 
Some of these schemes are in Tenderstem-growing regions, such as Kenya, where the branded broccoli variety already works to support a sustainable and ethical farming model. 
For the past 15 years, the humanitarian organisation has worked with the food industry to host fundraising initiatives. 
In 2013, these include creating a '5 star burger' with their star chefs that was available to buy at Taste of London; and in collaboration with The Ship's annual Scotch egg challenge, inviting top restaurants to design gourmet Scotch eggs that were then auctioned to the highest bidder. 
Hundreds of restaurants and a host of celebrity ambassadors, including Raymond Blanc, Atul Kochhar and Angela Hartnett, took part in this year's campaign, which will raise £250,000 from participating restaurants. 
One of the organisation's biggest initiatives is 'Love Food Give Food', an annual campaign that invites food lovers across the UK to help get child hunger off the table. 
From participating restaurants across the country typically adding £1 to their bill as a donation for a limited period of time, through to individuals running 'Supperheroes' fundraising supper clubs, Love Food Give Food runs from September until November. 
In 2014 Tenderstem will be the headline sponsor of a 'thank you' event to be hosted by the charity which will recognise those who took part in the campaign. There will be several well-known faces present, including chefs and restaurateurs, and Tenderstem will be available to sample during the evening. 
Building on this, Tenderstem will also be a national sponsor of a brand new campaign for Action Against Hunger, which is set to launch in autumn 2014. The initiative will focus primarily on social media as a way of generating donations from its partners. Tenderstem will support the activity across its social media platforms and on its website. 
Andy Macdonald, managing director at Coregeo, which licenses and markets Tenderstem in the UK, said: "Tenderstem is proud to be joining forces with Action Against Hunger. We feel that they have a fantastic groundswell of support from the food community and we are excited to be a part of that. We hope that our involvement will help bring the charity one step closer to its aim of ending child hunger." 
Jean-Michel Grand, executive director of Action Against Hunger, said: "Action Against Hunger is delighted that Tenderstem have confirmed they will be supporting our live-saving activities around the world, by joining our Love Food Give Food initiative and headlining one of our major food industry events. 
"We are lucky to be supported by many great organisations in the UK food and hospitality industry and Tenderstem represents a great brand which delivers a nutritious product enjoyed by food lovers and families alike. We think there is a great fit between our two organisations and we look forward to working together closely in the months ahead." 
Courtesy of the Fresh Produce Journal: http://bit.ly/1kgHUUq

Rising to the recycling challenge

Published: 9 Dec 2013

New communal recycling areas have opened at eight tower blocks in Norwich as the city rises to the challenge of getting as many people as possible doing their bit for the environment. 
Residents of the high-rise blocks are the latest to benefit as part of a plan to ensure easy access to recycling facilities for everyone in the city. 
New recycling centres have been set up outside Normandy, Winchester, Markham, Seaman, Aylmer, Ashbourne, Burleigh and Compass towers. 
It will mean people living in the tower blocks will be able to place plastic bottles, paper, card and cans in bins just outside their buildings to be taken away for recycling. There is also a container for glass bottles and jars, and a food waste bin. 
All residents have been given re-usable white sacks and small kitchen food caddies to assist with taking their recycling down to the communal bins. 
Public consultations were held at all tower blocks prior to the bins being installed. All bins have been adequately screened following concerns raised by residents. 
Councillor Mike Stonard, portfolio holder for waste and recycling said: 
"Our aim is to get everyone in Norwich recycling so we need to make it as easy for them as possible. Installing communal bins at the tower blocks is part of our project to provide easy to access recycling for everyone across the city. 
"We have provided around 28,000 litres of recycling capacity and we hope all residents of the tower blocks will embrace the new facilities." 
The new facilities at tower blocks are all part of Norwich City Council's drive to hit its recycling targets and were designed with our partners NPS Norwich Limited. 
In addition to the tenants in the tower blocks, in the last four years Norwich City Council has also enabled around 4,000 other council flat tenants to recycle their waste by providing communal facilities. 
Courtesy of Norwich County Council: http://www.norwich.gov.uk/news/Pages/Risingtotherecyclingchallenge.aspx

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

Courtauld 2 misses food waste reduction target

Published: 28 Nov 2013

The target of reducing household food and drink waste included in the second phase of the Courtauld Commitment has been missed, the latest WRAP figures indicate. 
A report on the 2010-2012 phase of the grocery sector voluntary agreement revealed food and drink waste in the period decreased by 270,000 tonnes, or 3.7%, just shy of the 4% target. 
WRAP said reasons for this included changes in eating habits and that there are a million more households in the UK now compared to 2007. 
The organisation pointed out that taking into account rising production, sales volumes and household numbers, a reduction of 6.1% in total household food waste had been achieved. 
The other two targets part of the voluntary agreement were met or exceeded. The carbon impact of grocery packaging was reduced by 10% against a target of 10%. Grocery product and packaging waste in the supply chain was reduced by 7.4%, against a target of 5%. 
The final results contrasts with a 2011 report, which indicated more progress had been made in the areas of food waste and packaging reduction, rather than in the supply chain. 
Nonetheless, WRAP pointed out Courtauld Commitment Phase 2 helped deliver £3.1bn in savings for the 53 signatories and their customers. 
Liz Goodwin, chief executive at WRAP, said: "The final outcome of phase 2 shows how collaborative working achieves results that have financial benefits to the UK and deliver significant reductions in environmental impact." 
The third phase of the Courtauld Commitment was launched in May 2013 and will run until 2015. 
Courtesy of MRW news: http://www.mrw.co.uk/news/courtauld-2-misses-food-waste-reduction-target/8656027.article?blocktitle=Latest-news&contentID=2186 
To help reduce your waste, view our Fresh Pod products.

Reduction of food waste could claw back over £100 million each year within the hospitality sector

Published: 22 Nov 2013

WRAP, an organisation which promotes recycling has advised that portion controlling and better preparation could reduce 75 per cent of waste. 
SCOTLAND'S hospitality and food sector could save more than £100 million a year by reducing food waste, according to a new report. 
The industry produces 85,600 tonnes of food waste a year, costing about £166 million. 
Almost 75 per cent of the waste could be avoided if it had been better portioned, stored and prepared, says WRAP, an organisation which promotes recycling. 
About a fifth (21 per cent) of food waste is the result of spoiling, 45 per cent is wasted during preparation and 34 per cent from consumer's plates. 
Carbohydrates including bread, potatoes, pasta and rice account for around 40 per cent of food waste. 
The report from WRAP, Overview of waste in the UK hospitality and food service sector, looks at the cost and impact associated with food purchase and waste management. 
In Scotland the total annual waste including food, packaging and other waste produced across the sector is 266,200 tonnes. Of this, 45 per cent is recycled, sent to anaerobic digestion or composted. 
New rules mean businesses in Scotland will have to recycle more from January 1. 
Under the Waste (Scotland) Regulations, all organisations are required to separate paper, card, glass, plastic, and metal for recycling. 
Many organisations which produce or sell food will also have to recycle their food waste. 
Director of Zero Waste Scotland Iain Gulland said: "New regulations in Scotland mean most hospitality operators will have to recycle their food waste from January - but there are bigger financial savings to be made from reducing food waste in the first place. 
"Today's report gives the fullest picture of the scale of that opportunity and outlines practical ways the industry can reduce waste. By understanding how and why food waste is created in their operations, organisations can take action to reduce waste and save money." 
A total of 22 Scottish-based organisations have signed up to the Hospitality and Food Service Agreement, a UK-wide voluntary agreement to reduce waste. 
They have pledged to reduce food and packaging waste by 5 per cent by the end of 2015 and increase the amount of food and packaging waste being recycled, sent to anaerobic digestion or composted to at least 70 per cent. 
Environment Secretary Richard Lochhead said: "Food waste is a global challenge which all of us have a responsibility to address - this applies in both the public and private sectors. 
"We've already done a lot to drive both the recycling and prevention of food waste, with last year's campaign and £20 million investment in food waste collection. 
"This report highlights that there are areas where we need to focus attention to achieve the greatest benefit - this will be important both for our continuing work through the Hospitality and Food Service Agreement and for the support provided to public sector organisations by Resource Efficient Scotland. 
"Our new waste regulations will also be another key step in the recycling of food waste." 
Courtesy of the daily record: http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/reduction-food-waste-could-claw-2816299

Hospitality food waste bill could reach £3bn by 2016, warns WRAP

Published: 22 Nov 2013

The hospitality industry's food waste bill could reach as much as £3bn by 2016 if businesses fail to take action, a new report by the Waste Resources Action Programme (WRAP) has found. 
To see the full report: http://www.bighospitality.co.uk/Trends-Reports/Hospitality-food-waste-bill-could-reach-3bn-by-2016-warns-WRAP

The shocking amount of food we waste and how to reduce it.

Published: 15 Nov 2013

YOU know that jar of jam at the back of your fridge that you threw away because it grew some white fur? 
Maybe it was left to go fuzzy because you just didn't fancy jam sandwiches, but don't worry. It might have been lonely and neglected there, but now it's in  
good company. 
It will have joined the average of six full meals each family in Wales throws out every week. This totals around 210,000 tonnes of annual food waste in Wales, according to WRAP (the Waste and Resources Action Programme). That's as heavy as a large oil tanker. 
Last week's report revealed this costs every family with children about £60 a month in wasted food. 
WRAP chief executive officer Dr Liz Goodwin said: "Consumers are seriously worried about the cost of food and how it has increased over recent years. 
"Yet as WRAP's research shows, we are still wasting millions of tonnes and billions of pounds." 
It isn't all bad news, though. The amount we are throwing away has actually gone down in recent years. 
WRAP believes we could further reduce the 4.2 million tonnes we waste across the UK by 1.7m. 
While some of us have stomachs strong enough to cut mould off the rind and still enjoy that cheese butty, many often throw away food that is still safely edible. 
Mark Parsons, head of catering and commercial operations at Coleg Cambria in Flintshire and Wrexham, shared a few hints. 
Mr Parsons said: "Always remember, do not use food after its 'use by' date. 
"However, 'best before' instructions are about quality, not safety. These foods can be consumed after the 'best before' date; they just may have lost some of their flavour." 
Increasingly, pre-packaging means we don't always have the choice of buying a single vegetable and economies of scale mean we can be tempted to buy in bulk. 
But what's the point of buying in higher volumes if a lot of it gets chucked?" 
He added: "Leftover vegetables can be used in soups and frozen ready for use. 
"Over-ripe tomatoes are perfect for Provencal sauce to accompany pasta. Again, freeze ready for use. 
"Mince can be made into burgers and frozen ready for barbecues, and meats can be braised down and used in casseroles and as pie fillings, the perfect comfort food for cosy winter evenings. 
"Jams and chutneys can be made with fruit that is past its best, as the sugar content will preserve the fruit. 
"And finally, use your freezer as a weapon against waste." 
Mr Parsons said: "Freezing food is a great way to reduce waste and extend the life of your food. It is important when freezing food that you freeze in individual portions to ensure you use up what you defrost, portion-by-portion. 
"This controls your usage and prevents further waste." 
There's plenty we can do at home to make sure we don't get to that stage, planning meals and regularly checking cupboards to make sure the jars and cans with the closest use-by date are near the front. 
But when you factor in how much supermarkets waste, it seems that despite our best efforts our relationship with food is going pear-shaped. 
Last month, Tesco, a behemoth of British retail, admitted it threw away about 30,000 tonnes of food, mostly fruit and baked items, from its stores and distribution centres alone. 
That is just one chain out of many, and that's only after the food hits the store. 
More is discarded before it even gets there - one report early this year from the British Retail Consortium indicated that half of our food ends up in the bin. 
Even so, steps are being taken to address the problem. 
Eifion Williams, of Wrexham, founded Fareshare North East Wales, an organisation that tries to redistribute commercial waste food to those who need it. 
Mr Williams said: "It is a volunteer organisation set up to retrieve vast amounts of food for community groups in Wrexham and Flintshire. 
"Huge amounts are wasted every day, disgracefully." 
Much of this food is perfectly edible, Mr Williams said, and was sometimes discarded simply because the labelling was flawed. 
He said: "We believe you also need to tackle what happens in the food industry further up the line. 
"We're in a situation where a supermarket will throw away 11 jars of coffee out of a crate of 12 because one jar smashed and it's not cost effective to clean the other 11. 
"Or food will be thrown away because it's themed, for example if the packaging was designed for the Olympics, it would be disposed of even though the food inside the packet is fine." 
It's not just a case of financial cost. It's a social and environmental cost as well. 
Mr Williams continued: "If you think about it, that's 11 jars of coffee beans fed with water and fertiliser, picked by workers, transported from Kenya or somewhere else, packaged and then freighted to the store. 
"That's a lot of raw material, a lot of effort and a lot of energy in terms of fossil fuels. 
"I keep bees. I know it takes 300 honey bees their entire lives to fill up a jar. A supermarket will throw honey away if it slightly crystallizes, which is perfectly safe and natural." 
Under Fareshare, the good-quality food that would otherwise have been binned is distributed to places such as women's refuges, night shelters and breakfast clubs. 
Mr Williams said: "We need a root and branch examination right through the food production industry as well as at the consumer's end. 
"Ultimately, food and the environment are the only issues that will matter at some point. They will be the headlines of the future." 
Courtesy of News North Wales: http://www.newsnorthwales.co.uk/news/128308/the-shocking-amount-of-food-we-waste-and-how-to-reduce-it.aspx

Food waste report shows UK families throw away 24 meals a month.

Published: 10 Nov 2013

The top three foods being thrown away uneaten in British homes are bread, potatoes and milk.  
The average UK family is wasting nearly £60 a month by throwing away almost an entire meal a day, according to a new report that reveals the scale of the ongoing challenge to reduce household food waste. 
Britons are chucking out the equivalent of 24 meals a month, adding up to 4.2 million tonnes of food and drink every year that could have been consumed. Almost half of this is going straight from fridges or cupboards into the bin. One-fifth of what households buy ends up as waste, and around 60% of that could have been eaten. 
There has been no progress in reducing meat and fish wastage, with Britons still throwing away the equivalent of 86 million chickens every year. The top three foods being thrown away uneaten in British homes are bread, potatoes and milk. The equivalent of 24m slices of bread, 5.8m potatoes and 5.9m glasses of milk are being wasted daily, while even cakes and pastries make it into the top 10 most wasted items. 
The study by the government's waste advisory body, the Waste & Resources Action Programme (Wrap), shows that since 2007, avoidable household food waste has been cut by 21% to 4.2m tonnes, saving consumers almost £13bn. 
Wrap said that such waste should be cut a further 1.7m tonnes a year by 2025, saving up to £45bn. Its chief executive, Dr Liz Goodwin, called on retailers, manufacturers, governments and consumers to agree to a "major combined effort". 
"Consumers are seriously worried about the cost of food and how it has increased over recent years. Yet as Wrap's research shows, we are still wasting millions of tonnes and billions of pounds," she said. 
The main reasons for the waste are shoppers buying more than they need, lack of clarity around storage and labelling and over-estimating portions, Wrap said. The carbon associated with avoidable household food waste is equivalent to taking one in four cars off UK roads. 
Last month the UK's largest retailer, Tesco, agreed to reduce its multi-buy items and other promotions after revealing that 35% of its bagged salad is being thrown out. It also found that 40% of apples were wasted, and just under half of bakery items. 
Andrew Opie, British Retail Consortium director of food and sustainability, said: "There's plenty to be pleased about in these figures. Avoidable household food waste has been reduced by 21% since 2007 and the progress is all the more impressive if one accounts for the growth of 1 million new households within that time. Cutting food waste in the home needs to be one of the UK's biggest environmental priorities." 
He said retailers know they are judged by the value they offer consumers "which means not only selling food at the right price but also making sure we can make the most of it. A range of approaches, including giving clear storage advice and recipe ideas, offering a wider range of portion sizes, and developing innovative packaging that extends the shelf life of products, has helped to drive significant reductions in the amount of food and drink we throw away." 
Courtesy of the guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2013/nov/07/uk-households-food-waste

Food waste: Families 'throw away six meals a week' in the UK

Published: 7 Nov 2013

A report from the Waste and Resources Action Programme calculates the cost to the country as £12.5 billion a year. 
The average British family throws away the equivalent of SIX meals every week in food waste, a new study has found. 
According to a report published by the Waste and Resources Action Programme (Wrap), this equates to £60 per month for a household. 
Wrap found the equivalent of 24 million slices of bread, 5.8 million potatoes and 5.9 million glasses of milk are binned every day - while the equivalent of 86 million whole chickens are discarded every year. 
It said the cost to the UK of this wastefulness is £12.5 billion a year. 
The report, entitled Household Food and Drink Waste in the UK 2012, suggested a lack of clarity around storage and labelling, over-estimating portions and buying more than is needed were some of the reasons consumers discarded edible food. 
Households have cut avoidable food waste by 21 per cent since 2007, saving consumers almost £13 billion, but the rate of reduction has slowed in recent years and 4.2 million tonnes is still thrown out which could have been eaten. 
Almost half of this food goes straight from fridges or cupboards to the bin without making it to the dinner plate. 
Wrap chief executive Dr Liz Goodwin is calling for a "major combined effort" with retailers, brands, government and consumers to cut avoidable household food waste by a further 1.7 million tonnes a year by 2025. 
Dr Goodwin said: "Consumers are seriously worried about the cost of food and how it has increased over recent years. 
"Yet as Wrap's research shows, we are still wasting millions of tonnes and billions of pounds. 
"The UK is leading the way in tackling food waste and the 21 per cent cut is a terrific achievement by millions of people who have taken action, saved money and helped safeguard our natural resources. 
"However, there is so much more to go for and I believe we should be going for it. 
"Research by Wrap shows that if we all make a major combined effort to act now, we can save up to £45 billion by 2025. 
"It won't be easy but what a prize if we achieve it. 
"I commit that food waste will remain a top priority for Wrap and we will be pleased to work with those who share my aspiration." 
Resource management minister Dan Rogerson said: "Cutting avoidable household food waste by 21 per cent is great news but there is still more to do. 
"Everyone has a role to play in reducing food waste and we want to see businesses helping consumers to waste less food. 
"Cutting waste and driving business innovation will help to build a stronger economy. 
"We will continue to work closely with food retailers and manufacturers to achieve this goal." 
Courtesy of the Mirror: http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/food-waste-families-throw-away-2684871

Brits 'buying less' fresh produce

Published: 4 Nov 2013

New study which follows on from the poor harvest of 2012 claims under a quarter of the UK gets '5 A DAY' 
Sixteen per cent of British households are buying less fruit and vegetables, including almost 25 per cent of lower-income families. 
That's according to a new study by market research firm Mintel featured in today's Daily Telegraph, which claims that just 24 per cent of the nation are now eating five portions of fruit and vegetables a day. 
The research follows the poor harvest of 2012, which might account for some of the figures, with 38 per cent of adults admitting they "struggle" to eat their '5 A DAY', and just 40 per cent seeing fresh fruit as good value for money. 
Mintel said shoppers wanted more information about the nutrititional benefits of eating fruit and vegetables, and warned the number of processed foods which count towards the 5 A DAY target, such as smoothies and soups, was confusing the public. 
Its 'Fruit and Vegetables' report also showed that over-55s eat the highest proportion of fruit and vegetables, with 31 per cent eating five a day. 
And 34 per cent said they would pay a full price for "ugly" or oddly-shaped fruit and vegetables if the quality, freshness and flavour was good enough. 
Courtesy of the Fresh Produce Journal:  

Tesco Vows To Cut Waste Food Mountain

Published: 30 Oct 2013

Every family in the UK wastes an estimated £700 a year throwing away food, according to Tesco, which is launching a campaign to help curb the problem. 
The supermarket's first ever food waste figures for its operations reveal that in the first six months of this year, 28,500 tons of food waste were generated in Tesco stores and distribution centres. 
The research shows that 68% of salad to be sold in bags is thrown out, as are just under half of bakery items. 
Around 40% of apples are chucked away, a quarter of grapes are wasted between the vine and the fruit bowl, and a fifth of all bananas are unused - with customers throwing one in 10 in the bin. 
As a result of the findings, the retailer is to end multibuys on large bags of salad and is developing mix-and-match promotions for smaller bags to try to help customers reduce the amount they are wasting. 
It is also removing "display until" dates from fresh fruit and vegetables, using smaller cases in stores and rearranging 600 in-store bakeries to reduce the amount of bread on display, with the aim of better stock control and less waste. 
The supermarket tracked 25 best-selling products and combined information with data from the Waste and Resources Action Programme (Wrap) to give an overall food waste "footprint" for each item. 
The last figures published by Wrap in 2011 estimate that 15 million tons of food waste is generated each year in the UK. 
Tesco commercial director of group food Matt Simister said: "We've all got a responsibility to tackle food waste and there is no quick-fix single solution. 
"Little changes can make a big difference, like storing fruit and vegetables in the right way. 
"Families are wasting an estimated £700 a year and we want to help them keep that money in their pockets, rather than throwing it in the bin. 
"We're playing our part too and making changes to our processes and in store. Ending multi-buy promotions on large packs of bagged salads is one way we can help, but this is just the start and we'll be reviewing what else we can do. 
"We're working with our suppliers to try to cut waste at all stages of the journey from farm to fork." 
Wrap director Richard Swannell said he welcomed Tesco's approach to tackling food waste across the whole supply chain. 
"Food waste is a global issue, and collaborative action is essential if we are to successfully reduce food waste and reap the financial and environmental benefits of doing so," he added. 
Courtesy of the Sky News: http://news.sky.com/story/1157269/tesco-vows-to-cut-waste-food-mountain

Norfolk Firms Poland Expedition.

Published: 28 Oct 2013

With the government encouraging UK businesses to expand their horizons and look to overseas markets to grow their businesses a group of Norfolk businesses, with complementary businesses products and services and supplying the agriculture and food processing industry, have recently returned from a market visit to Warsaw, Poland. 
The businesses are at different stages of developing their overseas offerings. The idea of sending over a group with the same target audience was to not only assist UKTI's team at the Warsaw Embassy in identifying potential customers for the group (by focusing on a specific business category) but to also to give the Norfolk businesses an opportunity to get to know each other with a view to working together longer term. 
Poland had been identified as a country which is easily accessible and is part of the European Union. It is growing fast as a country, exporting food produce and is buying in technology to improve processes.  
The Norfolk visitors included a diverse range of products and services with a common goal. They all supplied into the food production chain.  
Companies on the trip 
Redpack Manufacturers of flow wrap machines (Rackheath) 
Fresh Pod Ethylene removers from fresh fruit and vegetable stores (Thetford) 
KMS Hot melt manufacturers and suppliers to the food processing companies (Watton) 
Britannia Training Health and Safety training and consultancy services to the food industry (Wymondham) 
Enviro-Pod Transport and storage material technology to reduce energy consumption (Norwich) 
Electrical Installation  
Solutions Electrical Installations Solutions Ltd (Downham Market) 
Poland is one of nine Emerging European Countries and identified by UKTI as a good target for UK companies looking to trade globally. Poland is one of several with strong Norfolk links, with Poland supplying a high proportion of workers into the agricultural sector in the county. It is also easily accessible with daily flights from Stanstead.  
The group was supported by UKTI and local overseas advisor Alan Highet. Alan works with local businesses to identify markets and supply support services to get businesses exporting. The Poland trip was a diversion from the usual way UKTI work with businesses and it was appreciated that the regional UKTI team were able to "try something different".  
A reception was held at the British Embassy in Warsaw. The local Polish Chamber of Commerce presented facts and figures on the country's food industry and offered support to the group moving forward. The UKTI staff at the Embassy arranged an afternoon session of "meet the buyers" where retailers, growers, processors, recruitment companies and others attended to learn more about the UK product and services available from the Norfolk firms. A reception late afternoon presented a networking event with local chamber members. 
"Poland is an exciting market with a wealth of opportunities across all the sectors. Food and drink has a strong manufacturing base in Poland and there are numerous opportunities around food health and safety, technologically advanced equipment and supply change management. Whilst this was just an initial visit, the companies found out how easy it is to get to Poland and arrange another visit to follow up on the contacts they made". Ewa van Veenendaal-Rawicz, Deputy Director, UK Trade & Investment, British Embassy, Poland.  
Returning from the mission the companies are currently following up contacts made. The group will also be swapping contact details of anyone they met who others may not have had time to meet on the day. It is hoped working like this each company will be able to make full use of the trip and contacts made. Ongoing, and should there be sufficient interest and based on the Polish experience, then it is hoped that similar overseas trips can be set up.  
"For a relatively short visit, UKTI and the British Embassy set up a constructive presentation and reception for the small trade delegation. Although the numbers of potential buyers attending were modest in numbers, the quality was good. We came away with a much clearer understanding of the business culture and business potential in Poland as a result. Suffice to say that a follow up visit is currently being planned to look specifically at a couple of potential projects" Steve Neeves, MD, Electrical Installation Solutions Ltd.  
"Thousands of Polish people live and work in the UK with a high concentration of agricultural workers in the Eastern counties. Whilst to date we have delivered food hygiene, first aid and other training requirements solely into the UK food sector, we believe there is an opportunity to work with recruitment companies and others in Poland to ensure migrant workers heading for the UK have the relevant safety accreditations to start work immediately on arrival. Making the recruitment and training process much simpler for UK companies employing overseas staff. The trip was useful with recruitment connections made as well as meeting several members of the local Chamber and Embassy willing to assist my business". Colin Wright, MD, Britannia Training.  
"Poland is the third biggest apple growing nation in the world and a preliminary meeting with some Polish growers at Fruit Logistica in February suggested that Poland would be a good place to expand into. Having met with several growers at the Embassy it was clear that they are looking for technology to help them manage their storage and logistics better. The Polish growers were knowledgeable, receptive and keen to implement new technology into their businesses. I am currently in follow up talks with both growers and Producer Organisations which I hope will result in new export business for us". Mike Brown, Fresh Pod. 
The group will look to work closer together exploring other potential overseas opportunities, sharing thoughts and other information closer to home and proving that businesses can make the most of public sector support.  
To find out more on how the food sector supply group work together contact Mike Brown on 01603 702374 for more information on UKTI support contact Alan Highet on 07545 020351.

Tesco food waste: It's not just their fault. We need to rediscover the joys of Tupperware

Published: 23 Oct 2013

Waste is a collective problem, and it starts in the home. 
Tesco's food waste furore could not have come at a worse time. As statistics reveal the supermarket throws away 28,500 tonnes - well over half the weight of the Titanic - a year, an increasing number of people are relying on food banks to survive. It's shocking to think that while the UK economy loses billions because of reckless packaging, and nearly a third of food fails to end up in stores because of how it looks - 350,000 people are at the same time just a box away from hunger. 
New figures have said food bank usage has tripled in the past few months and it's odd because while many are keen to top up their local collection, they're also okay with throwing away an apple that's probably fine to bake in the oven with cinnamon, or discard a bag of lettuce leaves more than adequate for a rustic bap. 
Tesco - and I'm sure other supermarkets - are certainly at fault with production, distribution and sales tactics. But the public too has got some serious issues. There is a similar situation in the US. An article in this month's Time Magazine highlighted how families over the pond discard around $1,560 worth of produce every year, which is not far from the UK's £700 mark. It noted the figure is around ten times as much as families from south east Asia. 
When hundreds of thousands are unable to afford the basics - contending with Value corn flakes, baked beans and simple white bread - the rest are falling for less-than-canny sales ploys to make them buy more than they need.  
It's welcome then that to an extent Tesco has vowed to end such practice. It's no wonder that the retail mammoth is going to address the failings amid public disdain. But when half the country's waste comes from the home it needs to be a consorted effort. 
A fraction of what's thrown away would probably feed those in need - and most of it is probably far more exciting than Heinz tomato soup and potatoes. This story, while ill-received by us, must shock and anger those without to a far higher degree. And not just here, there are the 800 million-plus around the world too of course, on a planet where around a billion tonnes is wasted every 12 months. Indeed, the UK is simply a part of a worldwide trend.  
I didn't want to hark back to the times of old - I mean mention grandparents who lived through the war and all that. But bread and butter puddings, frittatas, pies - they're all fine ways to make the most out of food that's not quite at its peak. And, needless to say, all things enjoyed at my Nanna and Grandad's house if I happen to be there on a Monday. Well, perhaps not the frittata. But definitely the pies and puddings. And it's not as if they can't afford to go shopping a day early, it's just that apparent love for Tupperware. 
I doubt that past generations pay attention to ridiculous and misleading 'use by dates' either, which are probably about as accurate as Tesco's Christmas pudding stock plans. But shockingly, many do - some believe the lying rim of the milk, the blackening skin of a banana.  
Ignoring individual responsibilities that require effort appears commonplace - like scraping off the thin layer of mould atop the pesto. These things aren't going to kill and when so many can only imagine such pasta accompaniments it's time to end the fallout with the fridge. More importantly, it's time to rekindle an appreciation of plastic storage containers.  
Courtesy of the independent: http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/comment/tesco-food-waste-its-not-just-their-fault-we-need-to-rediscover-the-joys-of-tupperware-8899169.html

Tesco tackles food waste

Published: 21 Oct 2013

- Tesco becomes first major UK retailer to publish its own total food waste figures 
- Tracked 25 bestselling products to understand levels of food waste and where it occurs from farm to fork 
- Data has revealed 68 per cent of all salad grown for bagged salads ends up wasted 
- Tesco responds by announcing new initiatives, including action on promotions 
Tesco has today unveiled new food waste figures for its operations and supply chain, alongside figures that show 68 per cent of bagged salad is wasted and 35 per cent of this waste occurs in the home. 
As a first step in reducing this waste, Tesco is today announcing it will end multi-buys on large bags of salad and is developing mix-and-match promotions for smaller bags in a bid to help customers reduce the amount they are wasting at home. 
Bagged salad is just one of the 25 bestselling grocery products that Tesco has tracked from farm to fork to gain a detailed understanding of where food waste occurs. This is part of Tesco's commitment to lead in tackling food waste and to work with suppliers and customers to address this. 
The figures also revealed: 
40 per cent of apples are wasted, with just over a quarter of that waste occurring in the home. Tesco is involved in trials with growers to reduce pests and disease, as well as giving customers simple tips on how to store apples to help them last longer. 
Just under half of bakery items are wasted. Tesco has changed how bakeries are run in over 600 stores to minimise waste and is sharing tips with customers about how to use leftover bread. 
A quarter of grapes are wasted between the vine and the fruit bowl, with the majority of that waste happening in the home. Tesco is working with producers to trial new varieties of grapes that have a longer life. It is also working directly with suppliers to shorten the time it takes food to get from the field to the store. 
A fifth of all bananas are wasted and one in ten bananas bought by customers end up in the bin. Tesco has introduced a new state-of-the-art temperature control system to ensure bananas last longer in transportation and 'Love Banana' training for colleagues in store to show customers how to make them last longer. 
Matt Simister, Tesco Commercial Director of Group Food, said: "We've all got a responsibility to tackle food waste and there is no quick-fix single solution. Little changes can make a big difference, like storing fruit and veg in the right way. Families are wasting an estimated £700 a year and we want to help them keep that money in their pockets, rather than throwing it in the bin. 
"We're playing our part too and making changes to our processes and in store. Ending multi-buy promotions on large packs of bagged salads is one way we can help, but this is just the start and we'll be reviewing what else we can do. We're working with our suppliers to try to cut waste at all stages of the journey from farm to fork." 
Richard Swannell, Director of Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) said: "We welcome Tesco's approach to tackling food waste across their whole supply chain, and by identifying the hot spots, they can tackle these areas effectively. Food waste is a global issue and collaborative action is essential if we are to successfully reduce food waste and reap the financial and environmental benefits of doing so." 
The new food waste figures come as Tesco becomes the first major UK retailer to reveal the levels of food waste across its entire UK operations. The data reveals that in the first six months of this year 28,500 tonnes of food waste were generated in stores and distribution centres. The last figures published by WRAP in 2011 estimated that 15 million tonnes of food waste is generated per year in the UK. 
Tesco is using the data to make changes to its own processes and cut food waste. 'Display until' dates are being removed from fresh fruit and vegetables, smaller cases are being used in store and 600 bakeries in larger stores have been rearranged to reduce the amount of bread on display, leading to better stock control and less waste. 
In an address to the Global Green Growth Forum in Copenhagen, Philip Clarke will today give an update on the progress made to tackle food waste six months after Tesco announced it would be one of its three "Big Ambitions". The three ambitions are areas in which Tesco is committed to using its scale for good: creating opportunities for young people, encouraging customers and colleagues to live healthier lives and leading in reducing food waste globally. 
In his speech, Philip Clarke will say: 
"When I said earlier this year that Tesco wanted to lead in reducing food waste I wasn't just talking about reducing food waste in our own operations. I meant making a difference from the farmer's field to the customer's fridge and beyond. We are the world's third largest retailer, so clearly we have a responsibility to minimise the food wasted in our stores. However, we sit at the heart of the value chain and this gives us a crucial vantage point and a shared responsibility to act far beyond the doors of our stores." 
"We're using this insight to drive innovation. We're tackling this [food waste] by focusing on 25 of the most frequently purchased food items bought by our customers. We know small reductions in food waste will rapidly make a big difference in reducing overall waste levels. Over the last six months, my team of experts have put together food waste footprints from the farmer's field to the customer's bin. We've worked with a range of suppliers and experts across the globe, including WRAP. The output is really simple, but it gives great steer on where to act." 
Courtesy of Tesco PLC http://www.tescoplc.com/index.asp?pageid=17&newsid=881 - 21/10/13

Tesco to end promotions after revealing two-thirds of produce for bagged salads wasted

Published: 21 Oct 2013

Tesco has announced it is dropping some food promotions after discovering two-thirds of produce grown for bagged salad is wasted. 
For the very first time, the supermarket giant has revealed its food waste figures - showing 68 per cent of salad to be sold in bags is thrown out, 35 per cent of it in the home. 
On the back of the findings, Tesco has announced it is to end multi-buys on large bags of salad and is developing mix-and-match promotions for smaller bags in a bid to help customers reduce the amount they are wasting. 
Tesco commercial director of group food Matt Simister said: 'We've all got a responsibility to tackle food waste and there is no quick-fix single solution. Little changes can make a big difference, like storing fruit and vegetables in the right way. 
'Families are wasting an estimated £700 a year and we want to help them keep that money in their pockets, rather than throwing it in the bin.' 
He added: 'We're playing our part too and making changes to our processes and in store. We're working with our suppliers to try to cut waste at all stages of the journey from farm to fork.' 
The supermarket is also removing 'display until' dates from fresh fruit and vegetables, using smaller cases in stores and rearranging 600 in-store bakeries to reduce the amount of bread on display, with the aim of better stock control and less waste. 
As well as the salad waste, Tesco found 40 per cent of its apples were wasted, as are around a half of bakery items, with a quarter of grapes unused. 
One in ten bananas is also thrown in the bin. 
The research found that in the first six months of this year, 28,500 tonnes of food waste were generated in Tesco's stores and distribution centres. 
Courtesy of Metro http://metro.co.uk/2013/10/21/tesco-to-end-promotions-after-revealing-two-thirds-of-produce-for-bagged-salads-wasted-4154226/ - 21/10/13

Fresh Pod's new Single Sachet!

Published: 18 Oct 2013

Fresh Pod was recently approached by a company representative with corporate responsibility to design a promotional single sachet Fresh Pod pack to use as a thank you gift for clients. 
The design incorporated the company's own logo and included a message on environmental responsibilities.  
The single sachet pack is now available, minimum order of 500, to include a company logo.  
It has many uses and can be used as a giveaway or sold with an rrp.  
With the corporate giving season just around the corner, what better way to thank others whilst showing your commitment to the environment.  
Call today on 01603 702374 or email info@freshpod.co.uk for more details.

Encourage Less Food Waste - for the business person with a corporate conscience.

Published: 10 Oct 2013

Our customers give serious thought to the impact waste has on the environment. Many encourage others to think carefully about food waste whether commercially or in the home.  
To help get the message across we have developed a single sachet promotional Fresh Pod pack to be used as a corporate gift or as a giveaway or it can be retailed alongside fresh fruit, vegetables and flowers. It can be printed with a company's logo if required.  
If you are thinking of how you can encourage your customers to think about waste and the affect on the environment, please contact Jessica on 01603 702374 or email jessica@freshpod.co.uk for more information about the Fresh Pod promo single sachet.

Love Food, Hate Christmas Waste

Published: 5 Oct 2013

Tucked away in your fridge and/or fruit bowl your Fresh Pod is working hard to make sure your household or business helps to reduce the waste problem we have in the UK and the rest of the world.  
Every year it is estimated that we produce 3.3million tonnes of waste over the Christmas period. Of that, approximately £275 million is festive food, £169.00 per household according to the government waste body - WRAP. 
Barely a quarter of waste, packaging and uneaten food is likely to be recycled, most of the food ends up in landfill sites where it produces methane, a highly potent greenhouse gas. Dr Liz Goodwin, WRAP Chief Executive says, "This is only part of the picture. You also have to consider all the embedded energy used to produce, packages, and transport and deliver the food to our homes which produces the equivalent of at least 15 million tonnes of carbon dioxide every year." The cost of Christmas can't be measured by the length of your credit card bill in January.  
What a waste not to share the benefits of Fresh Pod. You could save your nearest and dearest hundreds of pounds next year by giving them a Fresh Pod 12 month kit for Christmas. 
Fresh Pod makes great stocking fillers for those hard to buy for - the elderly, singletons, students as well as friends and families.  
This Christmas we are offering you these following offers:  
Buy one fresh pod for £11.99 using the code FPXmas at the Checkout  
Buy two Fresh Pods for £20.00 using the code FPXmas20 at the checkout. 
Buy Three Fresh Pods for £27.00 using the code FPXmas27 at the checkout.  
For more information on offers over the Christmas season, email us on: info@freshpod.co.uk

Garrets on-board and reducing food waste - Globally.

Published: 1 Oct 2013

Continuing to provide meals containing fresh fruit and vegetables whilst at sea for months at a time has always been a problem, with some fresh produce likely to ripen and deteriorate within days of being stored on board ships.  
The reason fresh produce ripens so quickly and particularly in mixed store rooms is because of the Ethylene in the atmosphere which fresh produce give off naturally as they ripen.  
Garrets International a leading Marine Catering Management company is installing Fresh Pod filter boxes in kitchen storerooms aboard vessels, across the world.  
The US Navy has been using Fresh Pod technology for years in submarine kitchen stores where fresh fruit and vegetables are stored. This ensures servicemen have fresh stores on board and meals containing tastier, crisper and fresher ingredients, for the duration of their time at sea which has a positive effect on morale. 
Derrek Samms, MD of Garrets said "Ethylene is a real problem in cool stores where mixed produce is stored for any length of time. Our successful trials have proven that through the use of Fresh Pod, fruit and vegetables will stay fresh for up to four times longer. Ensuring employees onboard ships we serve have access to fresh produce throughout their time at sea.  
Many of our customers are enjoying savings through the reduction of waste through premature ripening, whilst contributing to a greener environment through the reduction of waste. Our business is not just about providing high quality goods we are always looking at opportunities, and increasingly looking at new technologies, which will benefit our customers".  
The Fresh Pod filter systems used in this situation are light and easy to hang from the ceiling. They last for 6-9 months and pay for themselves in reducing loses by protecting a store room over the period of time.  
Valerie Bullard, Fresh Pod said "We have been providing Fresh Pod protection to the consumer for a number of years in the UK. The time is now right to extend our range to assist with waste reduction and cost savings in the commercial world. We believe we have the most effective Ethylene control product on the market in terms of strength of product and value and we have a choice of storage solutions to work for shipping companies and vessels of all sizes".

Have yourself a Very Merry Green Christmas and make sure 2014 is a waste free and money saving year!

Published: 1 Oct 2013

Every year it is estimated that we produce 3.3million tonnes of waste over the Christmas period. Of that, approximately £275 million is festive food, £169.00 per household according to the government waste body - WRAP. 
Barely a quarter of waste, packaging and uneaten food is likely to be recycled, most of the food ends up in landfill sites where it produces methane, a highly potent greenhouse gas. Dr Liz Goodwin, WRAP Chief Executive says, "This is only part of the picture. You also have to consider all the embedded energy used to produce, packages, and transport and deliver the food to our homes which produces the equivalent of at least 15 million tonnes of carbon dioxide every year." The cost of Christmas can't be measured by the length of your credit card bill in January.  
Fruit bowls brimming with exotic fresh produce and fridges crammed with fruit and vegetables to cater for extra guests, the majority of us cater for more than usual over the festive period. Often the additional purchases end up wasted as they become an unnecessary additional buy. Stephen Webb, the Waste Watch, said "You only have to look at the number of black bags at the end of every street at the end of the holiday to see just how much waste is created at Christmas." An alternative to throwing away the excess is to pop a Fresh Pod in with the produce to extend their life by up to 4 times longer than normal. Fresh Pod's help to reduce the amount of fresh produce wasted in the home, an average of £680 per year for every UK household.  
The pods make a great Christmas gift. Not only are they useful and will last a full year, much longer than many presents received, they will also save the recipient a considerable amount of money by reducing their food waste over the course of 2014. 
The true cost of waste is the adverse impact on the environment with research showing the amount of food waste we produce is a major contributor to the production of greenhouse gases in the UK.  
Fresh Pod helps to combat this growing problem by reducing households' carbon footprint.  

Beating Waste, Naturally

Published: 1 Oct 2013

Naylors Farm near Spalding, Lincolnshire has invested in new innovative technology, Fresh Pod, in an effort to reduce waste whilst storing cabbages, cauliflowers and other fresh produce post harvest. 
Using Fresh Pod technology Naylor's are looking to maintain freshness of cabbages and other produce by removing Ethylene from the stores as well as airborne spores, rots and moulds, all of which hasten the ripening process and leads to a loss of freshness.  
Recent research has shown that over half the world's food production is wasted. Growers like Naylor's are forward thinking, looking at ways of reducing waste with a focus on Ethylene removal which has been identified as the primary culprit in premature ripening and spoiling of fresh produce before it can be consumed.  
The presence of Ethylene causes fruits and vegetables to ripen and decay prematurely and floral products to wilt. There is no 'safe' level for ethylene and neutralising ethylene levels after picking will extend the life cycle of valuable commodities, allowing them to be held for a much longer period of time. Whilst control atmosphere storage slows decay, it does not prevent the production of ethylene. 
Despite being a small country, where field-to-fork is achievable, the storage of fresh produce remains a problem. Temperature, ethylene, pests and micro-organisms are all able to decimate a crop both qualitatively and quantitatively. It is vital to ensure that produce is stored correctly, and it is here that big savings can be made. Temperature control has long been known to be effective at protecting food from deteriorating, whilst providing an environment which is hostile to micro-organisms and pests, but it is not a standalone solution - particularly when so much of the produce consumed in this country is now brought in from further afield. 
Fresh Pod technology has been in use across the globe for many years. Developed in the San Joaquin Valley in California the technology has been a driving force behind protecting the local fresh produce industry from imported produce by extending storage periods and lessening the need to source fruit and vegetables outside of the country during the slow season.  
Naylor's have continuously invested in technology and other equipment to deliver fresh produce in peak condition to customers across the UK, including processing houses, wholesalers and major supermarkets. A family business of four generations and started in the 1930's the business is currently owned and managed by father and son Brian and Simon.  
Four FP1 filter machines have been installed in Naylor's store rooms. The machines will protect 1500 tonnes of produce from rots and moulds in the atmosphere as well as remove Ethylene. The organic system is completely safe and draws the gases and viruses from the atmosphere; there are no chemicals involved and no spraying to protect the produce. By keeping the atmosphere clear of such damaging agents the produce will stay in a crisp and fresh condition for longer.  
Simon Naylor said "This proven technology has taken awhile to get through to the UK. Aside from the reduction in waste and the contribution to a greener environment, the cost savings in a competitive market are potentially enormous. Due to the effectiveness of the system the benefits are almost immediate - we are already noticing a reduction in odours as the machines kick in and remove the Ethylene and we are also seeing a reduction in white mould that we have experienced in the past.  
We will be using the machines all year round as new crops are harvested. We can also use them for storing daffodils bulbs as it works just as well on flowers through their lifecycle."  
Valerie Bullard, Fresh Pod said "We have been providing Fresh Pod protection to the consumer for a number of years in the UK. The time is now right to extend our range to assist with waste reduction and cost savings in the commercial world. We believe we have the most effective Ethylene control product on the market in terms of strength of product and value and we have a choice of storage solutions to work for growers, importers, exporters, retailers, wholesalers, catering and the consumer.

Pink Lady enjoys summer sales spike

Published: 30 Sep 2013

Apple brand Pink Lady is celebrating its 21st birthday with a sales uplift of more than seven per cent over the summer. 
High profile summer marketing activity led to an increase of about 1,000 tonnes compared to last summer. 
During July, an on-pack promotion in most major retailers saw Pink Lady give away a birthday wish-list comprising 21 prizes over 21 days. Top prizes included a weekend for two in New York, a £2,000 Selfridges personal shopping experience, and a family holiday for four in Tuscany. 
The competition attracted 35,600 entries, and was supported by print advertising including a Pink Lady theme to the Yahoo Lifestyle page, reaching a readership of over 14 million web users, and a social media campaign. 
The apple brand became a champion sponsor of Race for Life for the first time this summer, and experiential activity took place at seven sites nationwide including Glasgow, Nottingham, Bristol and London's Hyde Park. 
Over the course of the series, the team handed out more than 70,000 Pink Lady apples to participants and supporters. A specially designed app was produced to allow images taken at the Pink Lady stand to be sent to participants, encouraging social media sharing. 
Individual Race for Life events also featured in albums on the brand's Facebook page and a line up of novice runners from Pink Lady brand licensor Coregeo and its agencies took part in the Bristol event raising more than £3,750 for Cancer Research UK. 
Meanwhile in June, the team launched the 2014 Pink Lady Food Photographer of the Year competition with the introduction of three new categories and high-profile judges. 
Michelle Toft, marketing manager for Pink Lady in the UK, said: "We're delighted with the performance of our activity over the past few months. We put our sales increase down to a successful combination of brand experience and exposure - with consumers having engaged with Pink Lady across a range of platforms. Our 21st birthday was an opportunity to reward our loyal buyers with fantastic prizes, while our Race for Life sponsorship has played a key role in driving awareness of and engagement with the brand among our target market of women." 
She added: "The Pink Lady Food Photographer of the Year, now in its third year, is even bigger and better than ever. Underpinned by a consistently strong PR and marketing campaign, we feel confident that the next few months will also produce great results." 
Sourced from: http://www.fruitnet.com/fpj/article/159510/pink-lady-enjoys-summer-sales-spike

Two-Fifths of produce 'rejected by Supermarkets'

Published: 19 Sep 2013

As much as 40 per cent of fresh produce is rejected by supermarkets due to it not reaching their quality standards, according to a new study. 
The report, by the UK's Global Food Security Programme, reignites the debate over attitudes to so-called 'ugly' fruit and veg, claiming that issues over size, shape and blemishes are causing perfectly edible produce to be rejected by retailers. 
The report, Food Waste Within Global Food Systems, also claims that 15-20 per cent of crops are lost during the production stage due to pests and diseases, though it stresses work is being done to reduce weather-related losses through better forecasting, so that waste from harvesting crops at the wrong time and from inefficient supermarket stocking can be minimised. Grading standards are also being redefined by marketing odd shapes and sizes of fruit and veg. 
Nearly a quarter of waste is generated during the UK post-production supply chain during manufacturing processes, the report continues, though much of this is inedible parts of produce. It all equates to an £11.8 billion economic loss at an average annual cost of £480 per family. 
Food losses from within distribution and retail only represent three per cent of total losses. 
The report points out that great progress has been made in reducing household waste in recent years, though it adds that over-purchasing and poor cooking and storage skills are still an issue.

Local Flavours 2013 - Buyers flock to do business with local food and drink producers.

Published: 13 Sep 2013

Over 400 business people from catering, hospitality, tourism and retail with purchasing responsibilities for food and drink, turned out on a very wet September day to taste the flavours presented by nearly 60 local producers from the Eastern region. 
The event took place at Honingham Thorpe Farms the site of the proposed Norfolk Food Hub. The quality and diversity of food and drink on display and for tasting included some very individual tastes from established producers as well as some in the early stages of their business venture.  
The 400 attendees included large national and international caterers and retailers as well as some of the small individual shops and deli's found locally. Whether the exhibitor was looking for national distribution or to supply someone closer to home there was potential in the marquee for everyone.  
The Lively Crew, a local events company, created the idea from a conversation with a national retailer looking to source local produce. Sponsors and associates were carefully chosen from businesses and organisations who had a passion for supporting local businesses and included, 
Anglia farmers 
Honingham Thorpe Farms 
The East of England Co-op 
Federation of Small Businesses 
Norfolk County Council 
South Norfolk County Council 
Breckland Council 
Broadland Council 
The East of England Co-op has always supported local producers. Three of their buyers attended the event and spent the day meeting potential new suppliers as well as existing ones. 
Kevin Warden, Local Sourcing Manager at the East of England Co-op, said: "As a local community based retailer we are proud of the fantastic food and produce available on our doorstep. We're always looking to establish new relationships to grow our Sourced Locally initiative and this event gave us the opportunity to do just that. On the day itself we were able to provide immediate support to the local businesses with tips on marketing, branding and distribution. We've also taken away a 
lot of interesting contacts and will explore opportunities to work together in the future as we continue to increase the range of home-grown and locally-made products available on our shelves." 
The Federation of Small Business has recently launched their Keep Trade Local" campaign. Several FSB producer members where exhibiting on the day. The FSB sponsored the event as part of their "Keep Trade Local" campaign. Several FSB members exhibited at the event and the FSB support was well received. "A very well conceived and executed event, bringing local food producers to the attention of local, regional and national buyers" Martin Lake, Chair Mid Norfolk FSB.  
Many of the stand holders have already followed up contacts and have secured orders. Feedback has been encouraging and orders placed will be measured to see what contribution the event has made to the local economy.  
Stand Holder feedback from Local Flavours 2013  
"We thought that it was a very well organised event and good for local businesses and its small artisan producers. We met some good contacts". Rupert Farquharson, Woodfordes. 
"We had tremendous interest in our products. It was lovely to talk to other local companies. It was interesting how some suppliers really want to push ahead and go "global" with the supermarkets whilst others want to stay as local artisan/speciality supply. Local Flavours provided a platform for both". Julie Ecclestone, Traditional Norfolk Poultry.  
"We were pleasantly surprised by the number of "quality" people that came. They were serious buyers and not serious samplers as some shows. Really good for networking and for renewing acquaintances. Good to also see what other food producers are out there. We have added to our suppliers too because of the show". Paul Bayfield, Bushell's Bakery.  
Visitor feedback from Local Flavours 2013 
"Congratulations to everyone involved in yesterday's event. We appreciated being able to see and talk to many of the local suppliers and found it very beneficial". Julie & Alex, Green House Hotel.  
"The weather was rubbish but the atmosphere was fantastic you had some really good quality stalls. Sue Plummer" Light House Inn. 
Early indication suggests that Local Flavours will become an annual event with many producers and attendees already on the invite list for 2014.

Foodie Friday: Do you know your apples?

Published: 13 Sep 2013

As part of Norfolk Food and Drink Festival, there is an Apple Day and Orchard Fun Day in Swaffham, and in celebration of the versatile fruit the Great British Chefs have provided three gorgeous recipes. 
This week the Great British Chefs have provided three beautiful apple-based recipes to show off one of our favourite fruits. The recipes they have provided are Galton Blackiston's grilled Norfolk sausages with crushed peas and onion marmalade, William Drabble's Roasted John Dory with mussels, celeriac, apples and chive, and Galton Blackiston's pastry layers with wild mushrooms, Norfolk asparagus and blue cheese dressing. 
Click on the links above to view each recipe. 
Check back every Friday to see what culinary delights the Great British Chefs suggest next. 
Are you going to attempt any of the recipes from today? We would love to see your photos and videos, so please send them to us via iWitness. 
Sourced from: 

How can Britain tackle its mountain of food waste?

Published: 10 Sep 2013

BBC Radio 4's Costing the Earth explores how small changes, from robots to berry picking, can add up to big improvements. 
Food waste is a big issue. For the UK alone the numbers seem almost too big to comprehend: more than 15m tonnes of edible food wasted each year at a cost of billions of pounds, enough to fill Wembley Stadium to the brim many times over. And that's before you consider the enormous amounts of energy and water required to grow, package, process, transport and cook grub that never gets eaten. 
Faced with these figures, it can feel like we're standing at the foot of an insurmountable mountain. 
Waste was one of the key issues in the government's 2011 Foresight report on food sustainability and security, which stressed the need to do much more, much faster. So how do we tackle it? 
Just as every epic expedition is made up of single steps, small changes can add up to a big improvement when they're scaled up to a national, or even global, level. 
One of the biggest challenges with tackling the issue of edible produce wasted on farms is knowing the scale of the problem. It's not included in the government's official figures on food waste, although it's likely to be millions of tonnes. For farmers, this is also money down the drain. 
One large-scale vegetable farmer we spoke to stressed the importance of making small cuts in waste across his entire enterprise. He likened it to the cyclist Dave Brailsford's "marginal gains" philosophy that took the British team to Olympic glory. Through these measures he's cut the proportion of carrots going to landfill from 10% to zero over the past decade. 
Thanks to the addition of an on-site peeling and processing factory - as well as changing cosmetic standards by retailers - everything is pushed further up the food chain, with more veg going directly to consumers rather than ending up as animal food. Quick washing and chilling, along with innovations in packaging and store displays, also help to keep food fresher for longer, both on the supermarket shelf and in our fridges at home. 
The use of satellite and robotic technology can also provide part of the solution, by ensuring that planting and harvesting is as accurate as possible. But inevitably some crops are left in the field, and the cost of labour doesn't make it worth going back to collect them. 
Poor planning and back luck with the weather can also lead to produce left to moulder. To address this, a new volunteer movement called the Gleaning Network is linking with farmers to gather up this extra harvest. 
We visited a pick-your-own fruit farm near Chorleywood, around 30 miles west of London, where a handful of volunteers were stripping a surfeit of juicy redcurrants and succulent worcesterberries from low bushes in the August sunshine. Due to the unusually warm weather, the strawberry harvest had finished early, and punters weren't turning up to pick redcurrants alone. Rather than being destined to rot on the branches, these unwanted berries were now destined for a smoothie-making social enterprise. 
I had to question whether one small group of gleaners on one farm could really make an impact, but the movement is taking off in the UK and Europe, and the longer-established networks in the US gather millions of pounds of food each year. 
Closer to home, there are other small seeds growing. We've seen domestic food waste falling in the UK for a few years - probably as a result of families feeling the financial squeeze - but we still waste more than 4m tonnes of edible food each year, at a cost of hundreds of pounds per household. Away from the media glamour of Jamie Oliver's new Money Saving Meals TV series and book, community projects such as Oxford's DinnerTime (pdf) are aiming to make a difference. 
The idea is simple: local groups meet together once a month and chip in non-meat food that's past its best, along with contributions from local shops and food banks. The atmosphere is like a frantic episode of Ready Steady Cook, with vats of tasty lentil stew simmering alongside hearty bean burgers and veggie curry. Along the way, people learn cookery techniques such as knife skills, as well as picking up ideas for what to do with those bendy carrots and wilting cabbage festering at the bottom of the fridge. 
As an extra motivation, the team weigh all the food that's been brought, and calculate the money, carbon and water they've saved by eating rather than binning it. Like the handful of gleaners gathering berries, DinnerTime currently caters for small community groups scattered across one county, but the organisers hope it will spread further. 
Many of the ideas and projects I learned about while making today's episode of Costing the Earth seem so tiny in comparison to our food waste mountain that it's hard to see how they can make any dent, yet it does feel like attitudes are changing. A larger cultural shift is on the way, with new food waste reduction projects springing up across the world at a ferocious pace, and the issue rapidly rising up the public and political agenda. 
Cutting waste to save money may be a powerful motivator for businesses and families, but as a global society, we simply cannot afford - financially, environmentally or morally - to keep wasting perfectly good food at our current rate. Any effort, however small, has got to be a step in the right direction. 
Courtesy of The Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/environment/blog/2013/sep/10/costing-the-earth-food-waste

Upcoming Events This Month ..

Published: 1 Sep 2013

Local flavours 2013 - A Fresh Pod Production 
On Tuesday 10th September at Anglia Farmers and on the site of the proposed Norfolk Food Hub, the Fresh Pod team are organising a food buyer meet supplier event (locally sourced produce). The event has been organised to celebrate the quality of food produced in the Eastern region and there will be over 50 local food and drink producers showcasing their produce to over 400 food buyers from across the UK - including many major supermarkets, catering companies and wholesalers as well as hotels, tourist attractions and restaurants.  
The Fresh Pod team will be at the event and if you are in the Eastern region on Tuesday and would like to meet up with someone from the team in a beautiful surrounding with an abundance of food and drink to enjoy and on tap, please let me know so I can add you to the guest list. If you cannot make it and you would like someone from Fresh Pod to meet up with you on home turf in the near future we can organise that too.  
We have a busy events month ahead.  
Green Build 2013 
Fresh Pod will be exhibiting this weekend at Green Build set in the beautiful grounds Felbrigg Hall in North Norfolk, 7th and 8th September. The event brings businesses together with consumers keen to keep their carbon footprint to a minimum. With the average family throwing away £480 of fresh produce into landfill every year the Fresh Pod consumer kit is a popular item over the two days. If you are relaxing in north Norfolk over the weekend do come and look us up at green Build.  
IMPA Shipping Conference 2013  
Fresh Pod is now protecting hundreds of merchant ships kitchen stores across the globe. Ethylene causes havoc at sea in the ships mix fresh fruit and vegetable stores. Premature ripening means the crew are often left with less than fresh produce which is often thrown away before being eaten. Fresh Pod 18 x 7 hanging filters have been installed in many global shipping companies stores ensuring the crew eat fresher and crispier produce over the many weeks they are at sea. Fresh Pod will be on Garrets stand at the IMPA Shipping Conference on the 11th and 12th September in London. If you are in the Westminster area over the two days and would like to catch up please let me know.  
It's Official  
Ethylene removal from stores and packaging will keep fresh fruit, vegetables and flowers fresh for longer. www.fruitnet.com/fpj/article/159278/study-ethylene-removal-is-key. We always knew it and our technology is not only proven to reduce waste and save on costs but it is also environmentally friendly and completely safe to dispose of. Our choice of solutions for storage and transport gives flexibility in the sales process from grower through to end user. If you are in need of refills for your Fresh Pod system or you would like a quote for a new store or container let me know your requirements and I will organise delivery.

Broccoli slows arthritis, researchers think

Published: 28 Aug 2013

he University of East Anglia team is starting human trials following on from successful lab studies. 
Tests on cells and mice showed that a broccoli compound - which humans can also get from Brussels sprouts and cabbage - blocked a key destructive enzyme that damages cartilage. 
They are asking 20 patients to eat a daily dose of "super-charged" broccoli. 
This special cruciferous vegetable has been bred to be extra rich in nutrients - it is a cross between standard broccoli and a wild relative from Sicily. 
Our body takes this glucoraphanin compound and turns it into another, called sulforaphane, which appears to protect the joints. 
The volunteers will have two weeks on the diet before going under the knife to have their badly arthritic knees repaired by surgeons. 
Dr Rose Davidson and her team will look at the tissue that has been removed to see what impact, if any, the broccoli has had. 
She said: "We're asking patients to eat 100g (3.5oz) every day for two weeks. That's a normal, good-sized serving - about a handful - and it's an amount that most people should be happy to eat every day." 
While two weeks is highly unlikely to be enough to cause any big change, Dr Davidson hopes it will be enough to offer some evidence that "super" broccoli could benefit humans. 
"I can't imagine it would repair or reverse arthritis... but it might be a way to prevent it," she said. 
Her team will be looking for proof that sulforaphane has travelled to where it is needed in the joint and that it is causing beneficial changes at the cellular level. 
Another 20 knee replacement patients who have not been on the diet will be used as a comparison group. 
Prof Alan Silman, of Arthritis Research UK, which is funding Dr Davidson's work, said: "Until now research has failed to show that food or diet can play any part in reducing the progression of osteoarthritis, so if these findings can be replicated in humans, it would be quite a breakthrough. 
"We know that exercise and keeping to a healthy weight can improve people's symptoms and reduce the chances of the disease progressing, but this adds another layer in our understanding of how diet could play its part." 
The results of Dr Davidson's animal trials are published in the journal Arthritis & Rheumatism. 
The special broccoli, known as Beneforte, was developed from publicly funded research at the UK's Institute of Food Research and the John Innes Centre. 
More than 8.5 million people in the UK have osteoarthritis, a degenerative disease affecting in particular the hands, feet, spine, hips and knees.

British cherries make a sweet comeback

Published: 22 Aug 2013

Britain's cherry lovers have something to celebrate this year, a bumper crop of home-grown fruit. 
Sweeter than their foreign counterparts, fresher when they hit the grocer's and juicy to boot, British cherries are having a great year thanks to the sunlight they are getting, says Jon Clark, from industry body Total Cherry. 
"The recent weather has been brilliant for them," Jon Clark says. 
Go all-American with a cherry pie 
Keep it classic with a black forest gateau 
Boil a beautiful cherry and hazelnut jam 
"A 25C temperature is perfect for cherry production, the size, fruit, taste - all look good." 
This year it looks like growers will produce 3,000 to 3,500 tonnes of fruit. 
Partly its down to the cold spring, which meant the trees blossomed later and the fruit developed more slowly. 
"Last year we had (bout) 1,000 tonnes for the whole year - so we do need to recoup that loss back," explains Clark explains. 
In 2000 the UK only produced 400 tonnes of cherries, which had risen to 1502 tonnes in 2011, but then suffered a set-back last year with only 978 tonnes. 
But even with a record crop there won't be enough British produce to satisfy demand, even while the British crop remains in season - which extends to six or seven weeks. 
"The overall consumption in the UK over the next weeks is about 1,000 tonnes a week. 
"We've only got half the volume to satisfy the British market, We need a lot more growers to keep up with demand. 
Cherry facts: 
Blossom (c) Andy Oliver 
Belong to the genus Prunus, which includes plums, peaches, apricots and almonds 
Most edible cherries come from either the wild cherry (Prunus avium) or the sour cherry (Prunus cerasus) 
Cherries are thought to have been brought to Britain by the Romans in 1AD 
Legend has it the routes of old Roman roads in Britain are marked by wild cherry trees as Roman legions spat out the stones while marching 
Kent's cherry orchards are claimed to have been created on the orders of Henry VIII who planted a tree in 1533 
The National Fruit Collection at Brogdale Farm is home to more than 300 varieties 
Cherry stones contain amygdalin, which becomes cyanide when metabolised 
At the start of the 20th Century Kent had more than 5,000 ha of cherry orchards. By the end of the century there were less than 600 ha. 
Source: Defra/Total Cherry 
While Britain has lost 90% of the cherry orchards it once had, the red fruits are now being replanted but the industry can't keep up with cherry-lovers' appetites, despite production being set to triple this year. 
Cherry orchards increased by 17% between 2003 and 2008, according to Defra, Total Cherry say planting is up 15% year on year, but measured over the whole year 95% of cherries seen in shops are still imported from Spain, Turkey and the US. 
There has been a concerted campaign to get people to turn back to British, as food and farming minister, Jim Paice says: "The taste of fresh cherries is as much a part of summer as the smell of freshly cut grass or a trip to the seaside." 
Can you taste the difference between local and foreign imports? 
Jon Clark thinks British cherries are definitely sweeter for one key reason. 
"The biggest difference is the time allowed for fruit to develop on a tree. Sugars increase dramatically in the last few days before you pick the fruit. 
"Europe have to pick before the cherry is properly ripe, so UK growers can leave their cherries for an extra few days - which means they can get so large, so juicy, and so dark - and can have up to 25% more sugars." 
As British cherries can be picked off the tree, cooled down and "on the shelf the very next day", they are also the freshest, says Jon Clark. 
They also do more than just taste and look good - studies have shown that cherries are full of anti-oxidants anthocyanins 1 and 2 , packed with vitamin c, are anti-inflammatory, are good for arthritis and a rich source of melatonin. 
Eating cherries could also help with gout, researchers have found. 
Arguably best enjoyed fresh, cooks adore them too. 
In the Great British Food Revival, chef Gary Rhodes says: "Cherries are my favourite of red fruits - they are so lively - it's incredible. 
One of the other main reasons that Britain is enjoying a cherry revival, is because orchardists have learned some hard lessons. 
Growers across the UK in Kent, Herefordshire and the new areas of Hampshire and Staffordshire have been planting new cherry orchards that crop heavily on smaller trees. 
Don Vaughan has been in the cherry industry for more than 30 years. 
He explains the trees had become too hard to harvest: "The trees were getting older and were... huge trees. They had to be picked by women on ladders (after World War Two), you couldn't control the birds on the high trees so you lost crop." 
Production had to be scaled back. A new tree root stock was introduced - Gisela 5, which meant that commercially viable modern varieties could be grafted on to it, and the trees didn't get too big. 
"Now we have got dwarfed root stock, trees will be 8ft (2.4m) high and easier to manage, they can be kept outside and we can use plastic covers, nets to avoid fruit loss in bad weather, so what we have is more tonnage over a smaller area," explains Jon Clark. 
While some varieties in the UK have retracted, Britain has also benefited from European knowledge on which varieties to use - and have almost now got the pick of the crops. 
It makes it a lot easier for growers, but as it "can take three, four or five years before a tree is at optimum fruiting", says Jon Clark, there's a longer-term wait involved for anyone thinking of getting in to the business. 
Now even growers in Scotland are also planting to try and extend the UK season. 
In the meantime, keep an eye out for those sweet treats. 
Because it's a short season and you should enjoy them while it's hot. 
Courtesy of the BBC:  

Heston Blumenthal cooks for the public at Great Yarmouth Market Place

Published: 15 Aug 2013

The restaurateur and television chef visited the market place, famous for its chip stalls, to film for his new Channel 4 show, Heston's Fantastical Food. 
The programme, due to air later this year, focuses on dishes that built Britain and sees Heston travelling the country, taking a different iconic British dish each week, deconstructing it and rebuilding it with a suitably Blumenthal-twist. 
In Yarmouth this afternoon, he headed to the well-established Pie and Pea stall where he grabbed a pan and set about cooking mushy peas for an episode all about fish and chips. 
The chef also posed for photographs and chatted to members of the public, before offering samples of his pea-dish to passers-by. 
Duncan Mallett, market manager at Great Yarmouth Borough Council, said: "I had a quick chat with him and I thanked for coming to Yarmouth when he could have chosen north Norfolk, which is a bit Chelsea-on-Sea. He said he was happy to be here." 
Courtesy of the EDP: http://www.edp24.co.uk/what-s-on/food_and_drink_2_5148/heston_blumenthal_cooks_for_the_public_at_great_yarmouth_market_place_1_2338156

Grub's up as fruit and veg push food inflation higher

Published: 13 Aug 2013

Food prices are rising by more than double the rate of pay with the cost of fruit up by 10 per cent in the past year. 
Official figures today revealed the cost of the weekly shop was continuing to go up, tightening the squeeze on cash-strapped households. 
The Office for National Statistics said food price inflation rose from 3.9 to 4.4 per cent in July - in a stark contrast to the wider Consumer Prices Index, which fell. 
Fruit prices were up 10 per cent, with apples 36 per cent more expensive than a year ago and pears 30 per cent dearer. 
Other supermarket staples have also leapt in price as poor harvests and rising global demand pushes up the cost of feed. Pork sausages are 11 per cent up on July 2012, while best beef mince is 8.4 per cent more expensive. Breads and cereals are up 4.6 per cent and new loose potatoes 13 per cent higher than a year ago. 
Average earnings are just 1.7 per cent up on last year. 
Experts said shoppers were paying the price of last year's harvests, the poor weather at the start of this year and the growing competition for food from the Middle East and Asia. The lower Pound has also pushed up the cost of food Britain imports, roughly half the amount we eat. 
Phil Bicknell, NFU chief economist, said: "What you are seeing now is the result of the slow start to the season in terms of the weather and crop development. 2012 was wet and we had a long winter in 2013. 
"Last year the potato crop was possibly the worst we saw since 1976." 
Darren Shirley, retail analyst at City stockbroker Shore Capital, said: "We have been saying for a while that food inflation would be pretty resilient through the first six to nine months of the year and it's proved to be the case. The upward pressure is pretty broad based. 
"We're hopeful the residual pressure from last year will begin to wear off by the end of this year, around the fourth quarter." 
European statistics in June indicated that food price inflation in the UK was among the highest in Europe. 
But separate figures in Germany revealed that food price inflation hit a five-year high of 5.7 per cent in the EU powerhouse last month. Butter prices in Germany leapt 30.8 per cent while potatoes were up 44.4 per cent. In recent days, fears of a bad harvest in Brazil sent sugar prices to a nine-week high while China is expected to import its biggest amount of wheat for nine years, intensifying global demand. 
Last month, a leading Professor told the Daily Telegraph that food prices could treble in the next 20 years as the world population soars. Professor Tim Benton, head of the Global Food Security programme, said the size of the emerging middle class in south-east Asia would trigger a global "food fight". 
One food industry chief yesterday said: "People keep talking about what will happen when demand around the world begins to go up. Well it's already happening." 
Supermarket chain Asda last month said rising inflation meant family spending power was still £5 a week below its peak in February 2010. 
Courtesy of the telegraph: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/10240941/Grubs-up-as-fruit-and-veg-push-food-inflation-higher.html

'Growers need more sun'

Published: 31 Jul 2013

Tomato Growers Association says UK producers have been boosted by recent good weather. 
The recent sun has been a "welcome benefit" to UK growers after a slow start to the 2013 season, according to Phil Morley of the Tomato Growers Association (TGA). 
Morley predicted that most UK growers will see a five per cent decline on yields this year, but added a consistent spell of sun would be good for volumes and would help reduce the number of imported tomatoes. 
He told FPJ: "The recent summer weather has been a welcome benefit for UK growers who are seeing both yields and demand improving, though cheap imported tomatoes from southern Europe continue to dominate the shelves of some of our supermarkets, and we believe the demand for British is very much a priority for shoppers. 
"What growers and retailers really want is a steady last third of the season from July to October, good light for crops and demand due to hot weather will make this a profitable 2013 for most British tomato growers when compared to the last few years of poor weather and demand." 
Meanwhile, groceries code adjudicator Christine Tacon will make a pre-dinner address at this year's British Tomato Conference, it has been announced. 
The event dinner (25 September) will precede the main conference the following day, and this year's event will focus on disease and pest-control strategies as well as water and nutrient management tips for growers.  
"We really do believe the 2013 conference has something for everyone and are looking forward to the event with great anticipation," said Phil Pearson, chair of the TGA technical committee.  
Speakers at this year's conference include Mary Bosley, chair of the new Horticultural Innovation Partnership (HIP).

Local Flavours 2013 - launches to support the local food industry.

Published: 22 Jul 2013

The Eastern region is bursting with talented food and drink producers, from 
the kitchen table cupcake makers to some of the largest food businesses in the UK. All contribute to a diverse and flavoursome mix of great food, making the area one of the most talented food producing areas in the UK. 
Many of the local supermarket chains as well as the major nationals have made it a policy to promote local produce on their shelves. For instance, through the "Sourced Locally" initiative the East of England Co-op are active in putting more local products on their supermarket and food store shelves than ever before, working with East Anglia's finest producers, large and small, to source quality products from across our region. 
Amanda Long, Executive - Membership, Marketing & Media for the East of England Co-operative Society says; 
"The East of England Co-operative Society has been at the very centre of local life in some form or another since 1860. In the intervening 153 years we have been witness to epic changes in food production, agricultural practices, global distribution networks, economic migration and population explosion so there has never been a more crucial time for us to celebrate and invest in local food.  
"So much sits beneath where the food on our plate comes from. It is underpinned by local character, community cohesion, economic vibrancy and a sense of doing something worthwhile. All this is facing the challenge of pressure from development, massive food waste and security issues and changing shopping behaviours.  
"We at the East of England Co-op know how important sourcing local food is and just how much good it can do - from supporting the business we buy from to offering our customers the best value and taste we can. That's why initiatives such as 'Local Flavours' make such a difference - local people standing up and celebrating the best of what's on offer is one thing, but taking it a step further and bring producers, buyers and consumers together will hopefully build on the momentum of local food that we hope will grow and grow." 
A group of local business people, (Valerie Watson-Brown, The Lively Crew and BOLD Directories, Clarke Willis CEO at Anglia Farmers and Ian Alston, Owner Honingham Thorpe Farms) all passionate about the regions food industry, will be working in association to launch an annual "Meet the Buyer" event putting buyers and customers in front of suppliers and fulfilling a commercial requirement in the September Norfolk and Norwich Food Festival - Local Flavours 2013.  
Local Flavours 2013 is all about making it easy for food and drink buyers keen to support local producers, to meet and sample their goods. The idea of meeting in one place will relieve, for many, the pressure of trying to source locally in such a diverse market.  
Local Flavours 2013 is taking place on the 10th September 2013 at Honingham Thorpe Farms, just off the A47 and the proposed place for a Norfolk Food Hub, in the backyard of Anglia Farmers. 
The event is by invitation for trade buyers and potential customers of the 50 or so stand holders exhibiting. Attendees are invited from hotels and restaurants, catering firms, tourist attractions, anyone responsible for food in the hospitality arena plus food retailers, locally and nationally, passionate about sourcing produce from the region.  
The September event will also be raising funds for " Lucie's Life Saving Project" in memory of Lucie Proctor.  
Clarke Willis, CEO Anglia Farmers, "The Eastern region is rich with talented food producers of all shapes and sizes. We work with many such organisations to promote the strength of the food industry in the area. Bringing many of them together under one roof will give producers the opportunity to get their goods in front of many of the buyers who support or want to support the local food sector."  
Ian Alston, Honingham Thorpe Farms, "We have no hesitation in supporting this great cause by hosting the event at the farm. Supporting local food producers is crucial to our economy. Honingham Thorpe Farms has a vision to create a Norfolk Food Hub just off the A47. This clearly fits well with the Local Flavours 2013 objectives."  
Plans for the Food Hub will create a busy enterprise park with facilities to accommodate a range of rural food and drink related businesses. The vision sets out a new livestock market and a flagship food hall to include a bakery and restaurants. The overall scale of the project is significant, with emphasis on adding value to local produce through processing, a central storage and handling facility, packaging, promotion and distribution. There are plans to promote dietary health and to encourage science and education in connection with the food facility. A garden centre and nursery in the plans will complement the food hall. 
A core objective is to boost the consumption of locally produced food and drink, and increase the use of local produce in Norfolk schools, hospitals and other areas by facilitating a Food Hub in the heart of the county which is increasingly accessible.  
Valerie Watson-Brown, Director The Lively Crew and BOLD Directories, "Local Flavours 2013 is totally focused on food and drink and supporting local producers. Our job as matchmakers is made easier by the encouragement and offer of support we have had from organisations willing to help make it a success. We already work with food companies across the fresh produce supply chain in the UK and abroad and we understand the importance of supporting this regions food industry, retaining it as an exciting and innovative growth area with huge employment potential for young people. Our direct experience with the industry, tells us that it is just the boost the industry needs at this time and we will aim to make this a regular annual event." 
For more information about Local Flavours 2013 visit www.localflavours2013.co.uk , to book a stand or to add your name to the guest list telephone 01603 702374 or email faye@thelivelycrew.co.uk

Beating Waste Naturally.

Published: 11 Mar 2013

Naylors Farm near Spalding, Lincolnshire has invested in new innovative technology, Fresh Pod, in an effort to reduce waste whilst storing cabbages, cauliflowers and other fresh produce post harvest. 
Using Fresh Pod technology Naylor's are looking to maintain freshness of cabbages and other produce by removing Ethylene from the stores as well as airborne spores, rots and moulds, all of which hasten the ripening process and lead to a loss of freshness.  
Recent research has shown that over half the world's food production is wasted. Growers like Naylor's are forward thinking, looking at ways of reducing waste with a focus on Ethylene removal which has been identified as the primary culprit in premature ripening and spoiling of fresh produce before it can be consumed.  
The presence of Ethylene causes fruits and vegetables to ripen and decay prematurely and floral products to wilt. There is no 'safe' level for ethylene and neutralising ethylene levels after picking will extend the life cycle of valuable commodities, allowing them to be held for a much longer period of time. Whilst control atmosphere storage slows decay, it does not prevent the production of ethylene. 
Despite being a small country, where field-to-fork is achievable, the storage of fresh produce remains a problem. Temperature, ethylene, pests and micro-organisms are all able to decimate a crop both qualitatively and quantitatively. It is vital to ensure that produce is stored correctly, and it is here that big savings can be made. Temperature control has long been known to be effective at protecting food from deteriorating, whilst providing an environment which is hostile to micro-organisms and pests, but it is not a standalone solution - particularly when so much of the produce consumed in the country is now brought in from further afield. 
Fresh Pod technology has been in use across the globe for many years. Developed in the San Joaquin Valley in California the technology has been a driving force behind protecting the local fresh produce industry from imported produce by extending storage periods and lessening the need to source fruit and vegetables outside of the country during the slow season.  
Naylor's have continuously invested in technology and other equipment to deliver fresh produce in peak condition to customers across the UK, including processing houses, wholesalers and major supermarkets. A family business of four generations and started in the 1930's the business is currently owned and managed by father and son Bryan and Simon.  
Four FP1 filter machines have been installed in Naylor's store rooms. The machines will protect 1500 tonnes of produce from rots and moulds in the atmosphere as well as remove Ethylene. The organic system is completely safe and draws the gases and viruses from the atmosphere; there are no chemicals involved and no spraying to protect the produce. By keeping the atmosphere clear of such damaging agents the produce will stay in a crisp and fresh condition for longer.  
Simon Naylor said "This proven technology has taken awhile to get through to the UK. Aside from the reduction in waste and the contribution to a greener environment, the cost savings in a competitive market are potentially enormous. Due to the effectiveness of the system the benefits are almost immediate - we are already noticing a reduction in odours as the machines kick in and remove the Ethylene and we are also seeing a reduction in white mould that we have experienced in the past.  
We will be using the machines all year round as new crops are harvested. We can also use them for storing daffodils bulbs as it works just as well on flowers through their lifecycle."  
Valerie Bullard, Fresh Pod said "We have been providing Fresh Pod protection to the consumer for a number of years in the UK. The time is now right to extend our range to assist with waste reduction and cost savings in the commercial world. We believe we have the most effective Ethylene control product on the market in terms of strength of product and value and we have a choice of storage solutions to work for growers, importers, exporters, retailers, wholesalers, catering and the consumer.

New Technology beats fresh produce fatigue at sea!

Published: 11 Mar 2013

Continuing to provide meals containing fresh fruit and vegetables whilst at sea for months at a time has always been a problem, with some fresh produce likely to ripen and deteriorate within days of being stored onboard ships.  
The reason fresh produce ripens so quickly and particularly in mixed store rooms is because of the Ethylene in the atmosphere which fresh produce give off naturally as they ripen. A new product to the UK and European market, Fresh Pod, removes Ethylene from the atmosphere in a completely safe and natural way.  
Fresh Pod technology has been in use across the globe for many years. Developed in the San Joaquin Valley in California the technology has been a driving force behind protecting produce from Ethylene and ultimately extending the shelf life. It also removes airborne spores, rots and moulds from the atmosphere which contribute to early decay.  
The US Navy has been using Fresh Pod technology for years in submarine kitchen stores where fresh fruit and vegetables are stored. This ensures servicemen have fresh stores on board and meals containing tastier, crisper and fresher ingredients for the duration of their time at sea, which has a positive effect on morale. 
The technology is now available in the UK and Europe and available exclusively through Garrets International and in partnership with Fresh Pod Ltd. Garrets have researched the effect of Ethylene in cold store room situations and the removal options. Having independently tested Fresh Pod in a shipping environment the results have proven that fresh fruit and vegetables will stay crisper, fresher and tastier for up to four times longer.  
Ethylene is a real problem in cool stores where mixed produce is stored for any length of time. Garrets successful trials have proven that through the use of Fresh Pod, fruit and vegetables will stay fresh for up to four times longer, ensuring employees onboard ships we serve have access to fresh produce throughout their time at sea.  
Many of Garrets' customers are enjoying savings through the reduction of waste from premature ripening, whilst contributing to a greener environment through the reduction of waste. Garrets are not just about providing high quality goods - they are always looking at opportunities, and increasingly looking at new technologies that will greatly benefit their customers.  
The Fresh Pod filter systems used in this situation are light and easy to hang from the ceiling or by can be attached the cooling system in the store room. They last for 6-9 months and pay for themselves in reducing losses by protecting a store room over that period of time.  
Valerie Watson-Brown Fresh Pod said "We have been providing Fresh Pod protection to the consumer for a number of years in the UK. The time is now right to extend our range to assist with waste reduction and cost savings in the commercial world. We believe we have the most effective Ethylene control product on the market in terms of strength of product and value and we have a choice of storage solutions to work for shipping companies and vessels of all sizes."

Fresh Pod joins Investors in the Environment

Published: 10 Jan 2013

At Fresh Pod we recently pledged our support to be greener through Investors in the Environment, the new not-for-profit scheme that's been developed to help businesses become greener by offering accreditation and promotion for their hard work.  
We're in good company with over 600 local businesses having already pledged their support. Over 100 of these businesses are in the process of, or have already achieved, accreditation for their hard work. 
We're proud to be a part of this new scheme and hope many other businesses join and try to be greener!

Fresh Pod Goes International!

Published: 11 Dec 2012

2012 has been a great year for Fresh Pod, sales to the commercial industries have soared and The Lively Crew have ended the year securing their first order abroad. A company in Denmark tested the Fresh Pod filters and have been so impressed with the results they are now in the process of installing Fresh Pod filter machines throughout their warehouses. Of course, Denmark is just the first stop! Fresh Pod and Enviro Pod are off to Berlin in February, to the leading international meeting place of the fresh produce trade in the world - Fruit Logistica. So watch this space for more exciting international news! 
Back in the UK, our most recent tests have kept Broccoli fresh for 57 days! If you'd like more information on the products please visit www.freshpod.co.uk or www.enviro-pod.co.uk or call 01603 702374 to speak to a member of the team.

Fresh Pod Event Diary

Published: 6 Sep 2012

September is a busy month for Fresh Pod as we will be exhibiting our unrivalled ethylene control technology across the UK. 
First up, we are at North Norfolk's premier green technology event Green Build, which is taking place at Felbrigg Hall over the weekend of the 8-9th September. 
Entry to Green Build is free for members of the public and showcases the very latest sustainable products on offer in Norfolk and across East Anglia. 
Alongside Fresh Pod, we will also be exhibiting the entire Enviro-Pod range (www.enviro-pod.co.uk). 
Then on the 12-13th September we are off to London and the International Marine Purchasing Association (IMPA) 2012 Conference at The Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre. 
The IMPA conference programme offers one of the most comprehensive, exciting and engaging programme for those involved in the maritime purchasing and supply management. 
Fresh Pod is already used by a major naval logistics operation and we will be talking to organisations about how our technology can make a real difference to their bottom line.

WRAP Report into Ethylene in the Supply Chain

Published: 6 Aug 2012

The full WRAP report into the effects of ethylene and microbial hotspots in the fresh produce supply chain, with a look to identifying areas of possible improvement including the implementation of ethylene control technologies, such as Fresh Pod. 
For the full report visit - http://www.wrap.org.uk/sites/files/wrap/EthyleneSporeLevels.pdf

New Sales Person Joins Fresh Pod and Enviro-Pod

Published: 1 Aug 2012

We are delighted to announce that we have welcomed a new sales person to the team, with the arrival of Jaki Holland. 
Jaki, who completed a successful work experience placement with us, has joined the Enviro-Pod Sales Team, promoting the Enviro-Pod product range, but focussing on Fresh Pod. 
Initially based in our Norwich office on Yarmouth Road, Jaki is hoping to grow the company by taking Fresh Pod into new markets, particularly her native London moving forward. 
"I am really excited to be joining The Lively Crew and working on Enviro-Pod and Fresh Pod. The whole range really appealed to me and the savings the products can make to both people's wallets and in lowering their carbon footprint make them a natural choice for environmentally conscious individuals in this difficult economic period. I am already receiving some great feeback about the products and I can't wait to develop the entire range further" said Jaki. 
For more information on either Enviro-Pod or Fresh Pod, please contact a member of the team on 01603 702374 or email info@enviro-pod.co.uk.

Families warm to frozen foods: Supermarkets see increased sales as thousands try to save money

Published: 19 Jul 2012

Families are buying more frozen and dried food at the supermarket to cut waste and save money, the Bank of England have reported. 
A report, based on information from the Bank's agents around the country, highlights the tactics used by millions as they try to cope with the first double-dip recession since the 1970s. 
It said families are 'ever more focused on obtaining value for money', with many having already switched to discount shops and cheaper food. 
'As well as trading down to cheaper products, [households are] increasingly switching away from fresh goods to dried and frozen products, to minimise waste,' the Bank report added. 
However, with Fresh Pod, families can still enjoy fresh produce and cut huge chunks of the estimated £680 a year that the average household currently throws away in wasted produce.

Are British strawberries under threat?

Published: 25 Jun 2012

About 28,000kg of English strawberries are expected to be eaten at Wimbledon, despite poor weather affecting crops. What lies ahead for the British strawberry season, which now runs for six months of the year? 
Eating a punnet of strawberries with cream at Wimbledon is a British tradition, and the fruit has been sold this way for hundreds of years. 
In the 16th Century cone-shaped straw baskets were the preferred method of sale, making them one of the earliest packaged foods. 
Their sweetness and "quintessential Britishness" is widely loved by many chefs, including Valentine Warner. 
"I don't think I've ever met anyone in my life who doesn't like them. It's an iconic British thing to enjoy summer sports and eat strawberries with cream sliding down the side," he says. 
In terms of cooking, Valentine Warner says you cannot beat a really cold fresh strawberry milkshake, sorbet or scones with strawberry jam, but his favourite is something else. 
"A really good sponge with whipped cream and strawberries on top would have to be my favourite cake in the world," he says. 
But could this be the year that strawberries are missing from Wimbledon and that sponge? 
British strawberry growers in some parts of the country are having their worst season in years. The British season begins in late-April and runs until October. Recent wet weather has cost some farmers hundreds of thousands of pounds, BBC Radio 4's Farming Today reports. 
Strawberry grower Sandy Booth, from Hampshire's New Forest says his crop usually produces more than 2000 tonnes. But he says he's probably lost between 50-100 grammes of berries per plant due to the weather in recent months. 
"I think it's one of the most difficult seasons I have ever had in 20 years of doing this... as the weather is not one thing or another at the moment," he says. 
"If we've got lots of strawberries - we need it to be nice and sunny outside to drive sales, if it's cold and wet, then people are thinking more about soups and stews than they are thinking about strawberries and cream," he says. 
British strawberries account for 100% of the fresh strawberries sold in the UK during peak season, but the chairman of British Summer Fruits Laurence Olins agrees the season has been "challenging". 
He says the season is running two to two-and-a-half weeks late compared to 2011, and "we are at least 25% behind in volume than on last year". 
But despite this supermarkets are fully stocked with British strawberries. 
"What has happened is that due to the cool weather, the crop has been well spread," Mr Olins says. 
"We have crops grown from the south coast right up to Scotland. If it is warm in Scotland then everything can come in a rush, but... demand and supply this year is very even." 
Despite a 45% increase in production in the UK with 4,969 hectares of strawberries grown in 2011, Britain still relies on imports from Spain, Israel, Morocco, Egypt to meet growing consumer demand for fresh berries for the rest of the year. 
Twenty years ago British strawberry season lasted for six weeks, but now it runs for six months, says Laurence Olins. 
Now 90% of British crops are now grown in polytunnels, safeguarding what was previously seen as an unreliable crop due to its poor tolerance of disease and bad weather. 
Until a few years ago imported berries dominated shelves. Elsanta was the most popular variety because of its resistance to disease, long shelf life and reliability, but the orange-red berry came in for criticism for being "tasteless". 
According to British Summer Fruits 60% of fresh strawberries sold are still elsanta, although polytunnels have enabled farmers to experiment with different varieties. 
"The dominance of elsanta is slowly being eroded... it is still is the most widely grown variety in northern Europe as a whole, but there's certainly more choice available on supermarket shelves than there was five years ago," says Dr David Simpson, head strawberry breeder at East Malling Research centre. 
But polytunnels are not loved by all. Countryside activists concerned at seeing acres of prime agricultural land covered in plastic have been lobbying authorities to prevent more being erected. 
As UK production has grown, reliance on imports has dropped and the UK now brings in around 50% less than it did in 2007, which pro-polytunnel campaigners say means locally-grown strawberries have a lower "carbon footprint". 
However shop-bought strawberry jam, yogurt, ice cream, compote, and frozen desserts are generally not made with British strawberries. 
A large proportion of strawberries are frozen imports mainly from China, The Netherlands and Poland. 
China's market has grown more than 1,000% over the past decade, with it now the second largest producer of strawberries in the world, behind the market leader, the US. 
China's production has been boosted by cheap land, cheap labour, tax breaks and government policies aimed at encouraging agriculture, and its low production costs means it can undercut other countries. 
Poland, Britain's former main supplier, has seen its frozen exports plummet since 2005 after years of bad weather, and cheap Chinese imports flooded Europe. 
In 2006, as a result of complaints led by Polish growers, a 34.2% tariff was implemented by the EU on frozen Chinese strawberries. 
But in April the EU Commission announced that it would revoke the anti-dumping measures, leaving the market open to a flood of cheap strawberries from China. 
Even with the tariff in place, Food and Drink Federation figures show frozen strawberry imports from China increased by 63% between 2010 and 2011, and the nation is putting significant energy into producing even more. 
"There's obviously quite a lot of investment going into strawberry production in China... so they obviously see it as a big growth area... lots and lots of good research is being done in China," says Dr David Simpson, who attended a 2012 international strawberry conference in Beijing. 
What does this mean for the UK market? 
"At the moment Chinese consumers are keen on strawberries and there's an increasing middle class in China, so demand is outstripping supply for fresh strawberries, but in the foreseeable future there will be more increases in strawberry production in China," Dr Simpson says. 
"Looking further ahead, they may want to compete by exporting that fruit to different parts of the world but at the moment their infrastructure doesn't make that feasible," he says. 
With fresh Chinese strawberry imports some way off, it is climate and labour costs that remain the biggest current threats to British strawberries, according to Laurence Olins. 
But the market is growing 10-15% a year, and fresh berries are now consumers' most popular fresh fruit. And the good news for strawberry lovers is that prices are not expected to go up. 
Courtesy of the BBC - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-18490749

Love-15 - Exclusive Wimbledon Offer

Published: 22 Jun 2012

To celebrate this year's Wimbledon, we are putting on a fantastic 'Love-15' offer, giving you 15% off all Fresh Pod consumer products, throughout the tournament - perfect for keeping your strawberries fresh, throughout the 2 weeks sporting entertainment. 
To receive your discount, just quote "WIMBLEDON" when ordering either online or by calling 01603 702374.

Bumper Soft Fruit Harvest Helps Lower Inflation

Published: 20 Jun 2012

According to figures released by the Office of National Statistics (ONS), the wet summer endured in the UK so far in 2012, has led to a bumper soft fruit harvest, which has helped lower inflation. 
The ONS said that bumper crops of in particular grapes, bananas, peaches and nectarines helped keep food price rises to just 0.3%, compared to 1.3% this time last year. According to the ONS the price of vegetables, mineral waters, soft drinks and juices also fell. 
With Fresh Pod's natural and 100% organic ethylene control technology, it is possible to fully benefit from this bumper harvest, by prolonging the life of the excess produce, allowing it to be enjoyed and eaten rather than consigned to landfill.

Fresh Pod Demonstration Video

Published: 19 Jun 2012

Have you ever wondered how Fresh Pod's ethylene control technology works to protect your fruit, vegetables and flowers and doubling their lifespans? 
Wonder no more. Just follow the link below for a demonstration video from top chef Paul Brodell. 
Paul Brodell is a TV chef, and co-author of three amazing cook books aimed at people who want to create great tasting meals without any fuss.  
For more information on Paul, please check out www.paulbrodell.co.uk

Fresh Pod at the Royal Norfolk Show

Published: 15 Jun 2012

We are delighted to announce that we will be exhibiting Fresh Pod and our unique ethylene control technology at the Royal Norfolk Show. 
Fresh Pod's method of ethylene control has been independently proven to be the most effective form of ethylene control available in the UK and is now being used by many national and international fresh produce distributors, to keep produce at it's best and limit wastage. 
Taking place on June 27th and 28th, the Royal Norfolk Show will be an ideal opportunity for us to spread our message of saving money and reducing waste, to local growers and producers, looking to maximise their revenues in the coming months and years. 
Fresh Pod will be exhibiting on stand 178, Avenue 6. If you have any questions on Fresh Pod, or ethylene control, please come and ask a member of our friendly team who will be happy to help.

Fresh Pod extends Lankfer English Cabbage season by eight weeks

Published: 25 May 2012

With the fruit, vegetable and flower industry's focus on waste and ultimately reducing costs, Fresh Pod technology has been rigorously tested and proven to increase the storage time of English Savoy Cabbage for between 6-8 weeks without the need to introduce chemicals or expensive ozone producing systems. 
Lankfer Ltd, based near Wisbech and a supplier of cabbages, cauliflowers and other fresh produce to wholesalers and the retail market, has installed a Fresh Pod EC3 filter machine within its cold store which has succeeded in reducing the presence of 99% of the ethylene, given off naturally by the cabbages and responsible for accelerating the ripening process. As well as extending the freshness of the produce by up to eight weeks, the Fresh Pod system also kills invisible airborne spores and moulds which are also major contributors to premature ripening and ultimately increased wastage. 
The Fresh Pod system has extended the English produce season for Lankfer giving them the ability to extend their supplies of English grown produce into the retail market. Fresh Pod's completely natural solution gives customers fresh local produce and reduces waste at source cutting Lankfers environmental impact - reducing imports and ultimately cutting costs. 
Lee Parker, Commercial Director at Lankfer. "We have known for awhile that ethylene is a major contributor to the shortening of storage periods with our Savoy Cabbages. We have tried several methods to slow the process with little success to date. Fresh Pod technology has the credentials to sort the problem. We have tested it in one of our store rooms with superb results. We have been able to supply our customers with an English cabbage for an extended period of eight weeks, giving us more control over the supply chain, part of which is to be able to remove the need to rely on a foreign source. Our customer has a great sales message - UK grown, their customers like the localness and we benefit financially and environmentally. There is no doubt the technology works and we have great comfort in the fact it is natural, sensibly priced and as a bonus has a positive effect on our carbon footprint" 
Valerie Bullard, Director, Fresh Pod "We have never doubted the technology and the positive effect Fresh Pod has on reducing waste and cutting costs. The fruit, vegetable and flower industry has many challenges in a tough economic environment coupled with the pressure to contribute to a greener planet. It gives us great pleasure when customers like Lee at Lankfer's is prepared to embrace our innovative technology and we can deliver behind it". 
Fresh Pod technology has been in use across the globe for many years. Developed in the San Joaquin Valley in California the technology has been a driving force behind protecting the local fresh produce industry from imported produce by extending storage periods and lessening the need to source fruit and vegetables outside of the country during the slow season.  
Proven to outperform other systems available and with the accreditation of the OMRI, Fresh Pod is independently proven to reduce wastage and costs and to contribute positively to an organisations environmental impact.  
Ethylene Control, power pellets were introduced into the UK several years ago by Fresh Pod as a consumer product selling thousands to householders who have extended the life of their fresh produce by up to four times. With the UK commercial market having to work harder in tough economic conditions Fresh Pod is an environmentally friendly way of increasing shelf life naturally and is guaranteed to reduce waste and to significantly cut costs.

Small changes in the supply chain can have a big impact on reducing food waste

Published: 21 May 2012

One third of the annual global food production is lost or wasted, meaning that huge amounts of the resources used in the production of food are in vain. 
According to figures released by the Swedish Institute for Food and Biotechnology, post-harvest food waste occurs throughout the supply chain. Pest infestations, severe weather, mechanical harvesting, poor storage and stringent quality regulations can all result in dramatic losses of produce and ultimately money, even before produce reaches the consumer. Some of these factors are of course out of our hands, but in many cases, small changes at each stage of the chain can pay big dividends. 
Despite us being a small country where field-to-fork is achievable, temperature, ethylene, pests and micro-organisms are all able to decimate a crop both qualitatively and quantitatively. It is vital to ensure that produce is stored correctly, and it is here that the biggest savings can be made. Temperature control has long been known to be effective at protecting food from deteriorating, while providing an environment which is hostile to micro-organisms and pests, but it is not a standalone solution - particularly when so much of the produce consumed in the country is now brought in from further afield. 
Alongside refrigeration, producers need an effective ethylene control solution, to combat build-up of the gas, and to further combat moulds, bacteria and fungi. The presence of ethylene causes fruits to ripen and decay prematurely and vegetable and floral products to wilt. There is no 'safe' level for ethylene and controlling ethylene levels after picking will extend the life cycle of produce, allowing it to be held for a much longer period of time. While proper refrigeration and humidification slow decay, they do not prevent the production of ethylene. 
Once produce reaches the consumer, wastage is of less concern to the producer, given that it is likely to lead to increased purchasing, but the environmental impact provides cause for long-term concern. 
Retail stores are a big part of this problem, throwing away large quantities of food. Usually, this consists of items that are deemed to have reached their "best-before" dates. A large proportion of this food is still edible at the time of disposal. This waste is just that - waste. Some stores actively prevent access to poor or homeless people. There are others who do work with charitable organisations to distribute food but, sadly, this is not the norm. 
It is clear that the mass-production culture is unsustainable, without more being done at all stages of the process to better protect and use the food we grow. 
Courtesy of The Fresh Produce Journal - http://www.freshinfo.com/index.phps=n&ss=nd&sid=55585&s_txt=&s_date=0&ms=&offset=0

WRAP's Latest Figures Show UK Families Throw £680 Away Each Year

Published: 15 May 2012

According to the latest figures from WRAP, the average UK household currently throws away over £680 of fresh food every year. 
WRAP, who have previously stated that over 60% of all the salad items we buy are thrown away untouched, have upped the figures from previous estimates of £420 to fall in line with dramatic rises in the cost of food. 
At only £12.99, for a year's supply, a Fresh Pod is fast becoming a necessary tool in every households fight against food waste. 
By utilising ethylene control, Fresh Pod quadruples the lifetime of fresh produce, giving busy families time to eat what they have brought, whilst it remains at its edible best - saving the cost of a family holiday, every year.

Super Yachts, Super Fresh Supplies

Published: 19 Apr 2012

A major UK supplier of fresh produce to some of the world's most luxurious private yachts is using Fresh Pod sachets to protect fresh fruit and vegetables despatched from New Covent Garden near Heathrow to some of the most exotic places on the planet - the likes of the Caribbean, Indian Ocean and the Mediterranean. 
With some of the most reputable and demanding chefs creating daily menus aboard some of the biggest private yachts sailing in some of the most beautiful places in the world, the need to source the finest delicacies and first class produce is a crucial part of their remit. The UK is renowned for its consistency in providing the best and freshest ingredients and with this comes the challenge to deliver them in perfect conditions, whatever the length of their journey, to their final destination.  
All fruit and vegetables, as soon as they are cut, start to break down. Once harvested, fresh produce gives off ethylene naturally as they start to ripen and decompose. Whilst this is Mother Nature's way of reproducing it can lead to premature rotting and ultimately waste. This process is heightened when the fresh produce has to travel in a confine space for any length of time. 
Fresh Pod is a natural and 100% organic solution which absorbs ethylene and ultimately extends the shelf life of fruit and vegetables for up to four times longer than normal. By doing so fresh produce stays in a near perfect state for much longer and means those out to sea for periods of time can still enjoy their 5 a day at its fresh best. The technology behind Fresh Pod has been used commercially in places such as the USA for over 20 years. The US Navy uses Fresh Pod to protect fresh fruit and vegetables on their submarines for up to 3 months whilst at sea.  
The commercial aspect to Fresh Pod is new to the UK but already some of the major growers, importers and wholesalers are starting to see the benefits of extending the shelf life of fresh produce using Fresh Pod technology. The added benefit of it being a totally safe and natural product and recyclable also helps a business contribute to a greener environment. 
Valerie Bullard, Director of Fresh Pod, "Ethylene given off by fresh fruit, vegetables and flowers is a major contributor to the greenhouse effect, often ripening fresh produce before it has the chance to be used. You have heard of the expression 'one bad apple....' it is the acceleration of ethylene given off by a bad apple which upsets the rest of the cart. Fresh Pod can double the shelf life of fresh produce with benefits for both the commercial and consumer user in terms of saving money and reducing their carbon footprint. Fresh Pod technology is new to the UK but it has been used commercial overseas for several decades. Being organic and natural it is suitable for use everywhere fresh fruit, vegetables and flowers are stored, transported or displayed. We are pleased to be working with Ian and his team to provide fresh produce to difficult to reach locations".  
Ian Jarvis, MD Superyacht Supplies "Delivering quality fresh produce across the world presents many challenges to our team. Our customers expect the best of everything we provide. Using fresh Pod not only ensure deliveries, including some of the more sensitive produce such as soft berries and leafy vegetables, arrive fresh it also reduces waste and has longer term benefits as chefs are encouraged to transfer the sachets from the boxed items to their fridges to continue protecting the content".

Select Fruit on Heatlh Properties Rather than Appearance says Expert

Published: 17 Apr 2012

Older varieties of fruit and veg may be considerably healthier than their modern supermarket equivalents, researchers have claimed. 
A pilot study found that an unfashionable dessert apple which dates back to Victorian times had ten times more of a disease-preventing chemical than its newer, shiny-skinned equivalents. 
A team of scientists will now undertake a three-year study, examining older varieties of apples, bananas, onions, mangos and teas. 
It has already found that the Egremont Russet apple, which is often used to make cider, contains considerably more phloridzin than modern glossy fruits. The chemical increases the absorption of sugar from the digestive system into the blood, and can reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. 
While the Egremont Russet is widely available, the researchers stressed that it has not been intensively farmed for a higher yield and pristine appearance, which can substantially reduce nutrient levels. 
The scientists at Unilever, Kew Gardens and Cranfield University in Bedfordshire, believe "pre-domesticated" fruit and veg eaten in years gone by had higher levels of hundreds of chemicals that help prevent disease. These include salicylates, which are used to make aspirin and play a key role in fighting cancer. 
Today, some mass-produced fruits and vegetables are stored for months at a time in cold conditions to slow the ripening process. This process depletes the vitamins in the skin. 
In addition, supermarkets select the best-looking stock when, in fact, plants produce more nutritious chemicals if they have bruises, as these are produced as a defence mechanism against threats. 
Professor Leon Terry from Cranfield University said a "paradigm shift" was required to promote foods based on their health-boosting properties, not their appearance. 
Lead researcher Dr Mark Berry added: "In the Stone Age people would have eaten 20 or 25 different types of fruit and vegetables every day. Now we tend to breed and eat a few of the same ones all the time. 
"We are very interested in whether older varieties of plants have higher levels of nutrients, which we don't get nearly enough of in our diets." 
It could eventually be possible for wholesalers to grow more nutritious varieties from dozens or even hundreds of years ago. 
Courtesy of - http://www.iol.co.za/lifestyle/food-drink/food/old-is-good-in-fruit-and-veg-1.1277810

Buy Now so you Don't Have to Pay Later - Royal Mail price rises could end free P&P

Published: 3 Apr 2012

The Government have recently announced massive increases on the price of postage via Royal Mail in the UK, with 1st and 2nd class stamps expected to rise substantially. Currently Enviro-Pod offer FREE postage and packing on all our Fresh Pod consumer products, but due to the announced rises, we may no longer be able to offer this service to our customers. As such we are urging all our existing customers to take advantage of the current free postage, before the rises come into force at the end of April.  
To help with the rising cost of living and to ensure that our loyal customers are as insulated as possible from external price rises our Easter Holiday 25% off offer will run throughout April up to the rise in postage costs. 
25% discount is available on Fresh Pod consumer products by entering discount code EASTER when purchasing. To purchase please visit the link below: 

Nature deficit disorder 'damaging Britain's children

Published: 30 Mar 2012

UK children are losing contact with nature at a "dramatic" rate, and their health and education are suffering, a National Trust report says. 
Traffic, the lure of video screens and parental anxieties are conspiring to keep children indoors, it says. 
Evidence suggests the problem is worse in the UK than other parts of Europe, and may help explain poor UK rankings in childhood satisfaction surveys. 
The trust is launching a consultation on tackling "nature deficit disorder". 
"This is about changing the way children grow up and see the world," said Stephen Moss, the author, naturalist and former BBC Springwatch producer who wrote the Natural Childhood report for the National Trust. 
"The natural world doesn't come with an instruction leaflet, so it teaches you to use your creative imagination. 
"When you build a den with your mates when you're nine years old, you learn teamwork - you disagree with each other, you have arguments, you resolve them, you work together again - it's like a team-building course, only you did it when you were nine." 
The trust argues, as have other bodies in previous years, that the growing dissociation of children from the natural world and internment in the "cotton wool culture" of indoor parental guidance impairs their capacity to learn through experience. 
It cites evidence showing that: 
children learn more and behave better when lessons are conducted outdoors 
symptoms of children diagnosed with ADHD improve when they are exposed to nature 
children say their happiness depends more on having things to do outdoors more than owning technology. 
Yet British parents feel more pressure to provide gadgets for their children than in other European countries. 
The phrase nature deficit disorder was coined in 2005 by author Richard Louv, who argued that the human cost of "alienation from nature" was measured in "diminished use of the senses, attention difficulties and higher rates of physical and emotional illnesses". 
In the UK as in many other countries, rates of obesity, self-harm and mental health disorders diagnosed in children have climbed significantly since the 1970s. 
But nature deficit disorder is not generally regarded as a medical condition. 
"There's undoubtedly a phenomenon that's not good for health, which is about not giving access to outdoors or green space, safe risk-taking and so on," said David Pencheon, a medical doctor who now heads the National Health Service's sustainable development unit. 
"But I wouldn't say we've identified a medical condition. 
"In fact we don't want to 'medicalise' it, we should see it as part of everyday life - if you medicalise it, people say 'you'd better go to your doctor and take a pill'." 
But despite growing recognition of nature deficit disorder, policies aiming to tackle it appear thin on the ground. 
Mr Moss cites statistics showing that the area where children are allowed to range unsupervised around their homes has shrunk by 90% since the 1970s. 
Whereas some reasons behind the parental "cotton wool culture" are not based in logic - most sexual molestation occurs in the home, for example, not in parks - the one "genuine massive danger" is traffic. 
"I think the first step for any child is playing outdoors in the street; and in the 40 years since I grew up, traffic has increased hugely, and that's the main reason why none of us let our kids out on their own," Mr Moss told BBC News. 
"The only solution would be to have pedestrian priority on every residential street in Britain; when you are driving along the street, if there are children playing, they have priority." 
The report advocates having teachers take children for lessons outdoors when possible, with urban schools using parks. 
It also says that authorities who cite "health and safety" as a reason for stopping children playing conkers or climbing trees should be aware that successive Health and Safety Executive heads have advocated a measure of risk-taking in children's lives. 
The changes in childhood in previous decades are now filtering through into adulthood, where levels of obesity are also rising. 
Dr Pencheon observed that although doctors are beginning to prescribe exercise instead of drugs where it is indicated, much more could be done from a policy perspective. 
"One of the problems here is that the NHS is not incentivised financially to do public health," he said. 
"The healthcare system is run on a rescue basis - people come to us when they're ill, we patch them up and try to get them going again - that's not the culture of a system designed to keep people healthy." 
The National Trust is now beginning a two-month consultation aimed at gathering views and examples of good and bad practice from the public and specialists. 
These will eventually be turned into a set of policy recommendations. 
"As a nation, we need to do everything we can to make it easy and safe for our children to get outdoors," said National Trust director-general Fiona Reynolds. 
"We want to move the debate on and encourage people and organisations to think about how we take practical steps to reconnect children with the natural world and inspire them to get outdoors." 
Courtesy of the BBC - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-17495032

One in four now 'grow their own' fruit and veg

Published: 23 Feb 2012

Consumer watchdog Which? has confirmed what Fresh Pod have long suspected - more people are joining the grow-your-own revolution to save money and lead healthier lives. 
A Which? report has revealed one in four people now grow edible crops to cope with rocketing food and fuel prices. Researchers also found consumers were turning to home-grown produce so they could eat healthily. 
In the consumer magazine's online survey of over 1,000 people, 59 per cent said they had turned to growing their own because "increases in food prices mean I'm trying to be more economical". 
A third said their main reason for becoming more self-sufficient was because they were "trying to eat more healthily". Meanwhile 22 per cent said they had "less disposable income to spend on food" as higher fuel bills and other household expenses had drastically reduced the amount of cash they had left to spend each month. 
Fresh Pod, along with Enviro-Pod want to help people lower both their food bills, by removing the ethylene from fridges and fruit bowls through Fresh Pod and by keeping people warm without the need for external heat sources, with Cosy Pod. 
Just one Fresh Pod in the family fridge can save a massive £400+ every year, for the average UK household. Money that can be put to better use than throwing food in the bin untouched. 
News courtesy of The Edible Garden Show.

Opinion Piece - The importance of protecting your crop post-harvest

Published: 17 Feb 2012

According to figures released by the Swedish Institute for Food and Biotechnology, a massive one-third of the annual global food production is lost or wasted. This inevitably, means that huge amounts of the resources used in the production of food are in vain. 
Where though, do we point the finger of blame and where can we make improvements, which will enhance our bottom lines?  
Post-harvest food waste, occurs throughout the supply chain. From pest infestations and severe weather, mechanical harvesting, poor storage and economic factors, such as regulations and standards for quality and appearance can all result in dramatic losses of produce and ultimately money, even before produce reaches the consumer. Some of these factors are of course out of our hands, but in many cases, small changes at each stage of the chain can pay big dividends. 
Despite being a small country, where field-to-fork is achievable, the storage of fresh produce is a massive problem. Temperature, ethylene, pests and micro-organisms are all able to decimate a crop both qualitatively and quantitatively. It is vital to ensure that produce is stored correctly, and it is here that the biggest savings can be made.  
Temperature control has long been known to be effective at protecting food from deteriorating, whilst providing an environment which is hostile to micro-organisms and pests, but it is not a standalone solution - particularly when so much of the produce consumed in the country, is now brought in from further afield. 
Alongside refrigeration, producers need an effective ethylene control solution, to combat build-up of the gas, and to further combat moulds, bacteria and funghi. Ethylene gas given off naturally as fruit ripens will reduce shelf life and increase wastage. 
The presence of ethylene causes fruits to ripen and decay prematurely and vegetable and floral products to wilt. There is no 'safe' level for ethylene and controlling ethylene levels after picking will extend the life cycle of your valuable commodities, allowing them to be held for a much longer period of time. While proper refrigeration and humidification slow decay, they do not prevent the production of ethylene. 
Once produce reaches the consumer, wastage is of less concern to the producer, given that wastage is likely to lead to increased purchasing, but the environmental impact provides cause for long-term concern. 
Retail stores are a big part of this problem, throwing away large quantities of food. Usually, this consists of items that are deemed to have reached their 'best-before' dates. A large proportion of this food is still edible at the time of disposal. This waste is just that - waste. Some stores actively preventing access to poor or homeless people. There are others who do work with charitable organizations to distribute food but sadly this is not the norm. 
Regardless of who or what is to blame, it is clear that the mass-production culture is unsustainable, without more being done at all stages of the process to better protect and use the food we grow. Bear in mind, this from the 2011 Conference on Water, Energy and Food Security - The food wasted annually in rich countries - 222 million tonnes - almost exactly equals the entire net food production of sub-Saharan Africa - 230 million tonnes.

Sign Up to the Fresh Pod Newsletter

Published: 12 Feb 2012

The next installment of the Fresh Pod newsletter is now being put together and will include a fantastic money-saving offer. 
Alongside the latest offers and news is information of a great new product which we have launched in the UK for breast feeding mothers. 
Sign up now by emailing info@freshpod.co.uk to ensure you don't miss out!

Fresh Pod Commercial Sachets - Removing Ethylene, Bacteria and Mould from your post-Harvest Produce

Published: 3 Feb 2012

Not only does Fresh Pod keep your fruit and vegetable produce, crisp and fresh for longer, scientists have now proved that it also eliminates bacteria, mould and other fungi from your storage areas.  
A recent study by QMS Agri Science in South Africa, demonstrated that Fresh Pod Commercial Sachets not only removed 98% of airborne ethylene it also had similar effects on bacteria and mould levels. Fresh Pod Commercial Sachets were proven effective at eliminating; viruses, sour rot, blue mould, brown rot, fungi and air-borne bacteria, including 'Rhizopus', a serious post-harvest pathogen which can decimate tomato crops as they are held in cold storage, and the hardier still, 'Penicillium'. 
Ethylene is nature's ripening agent. Released by produce after it is harvested, Ethylene naturally causes fruit to ripen and decay, whilst making vegetables and flowers wilt. Without the complementary presence of a Fresh Pod, the results of Ethylene are familiar to us all, and range from scalding and a loss of crunch in apples, through to sleepiness in carnations and Russet sprouting in leafy vegetables. 
Ethylene control systems are available in many forms, but the recent studies by QMS Agri Science in South Africa have proven that Fresh Pod's ethylene control system out performs other products including Ozone generators whilst being considerably cheaper and friendlier to the environment. 
There is no 'safe' level of Ethylene around post-harvest produce and on average between 25-46% of post-harvest life is lost, if Ethylene is not effectively removed and managed. The unique pellets within Fresh Pod have been used for over 30 years to remove airborne contaminants in sewage treatment plants, oil refineries, airports and other industrial facilities. It is a proven technology. 
It is therefore clear that removing ethylene from cold storage areas, which Fresh Pod's natural digestion process has been independently proven to do better than any alternative, provides manufacturers with quality produce, while reducing shrink and increasing profits.

Fresh Pod Commercial Continues to Expand

Published: 31 Jan 2012

The commercial wing of Fresh Pod is continuing to expand, following a series of successful meetings with fresh produce suppliers around the UK. 
With ethylene control returning to the top of the agenda in the fight against food waste, Fresh Pod is being trialled across the UK. 
If you would like to arrange a meeting with us to discuss how Fresh Pod's commercial solutions have the potential to add to your bottom line, call Sue on 08456 345 185 or email sue@enviro-pod.co.uk

Freezing Weather and Slow Sales Give Wholesalers January Blues

Published: 24 Jan 2012

Wholesalers have reported trade is in the traditional January doldrums this week, with frosty weather chilling customer numbers still further. 
Temperatures were down to -4°C in Birmingham earlier this week. One wholesaler said: "It is a typical January really. It always takes a few weeks for trade to pick up again after Christmas." 
Another trader on the same market reported that, although some lines were running short, the impact on business was minimal. 
He said: "We have seen some price rises - cauliflower has gone short as a lot of the local gear must have suffered with the cold, but we still have French coming through. It is just that the end of last week and this week have been very quiet in terms of customers, or maybe they are just not buying veg and salads." 
The picture was similar for soft fruit however, and one Birmingham 
salesman said that, despite good quality Moroccan, Palestinian and Egyptian strawberries on the market at 70-80p, sales were slow. 
Spanish fruit is starting to come on stream and, while one wholesaler 
in Southampton reported "oddments" on the market, London importer Lisons said volumes are starting to build. "We started earlier this year than we have done for at least the last couple of years," the company's John Grieve said. "The weather has been a lot milder in Spain and we have had fruit since the first week of January, mainly early varieties such as Fortuna, Festival and Candonga." 
Grieve also reported the marketplace is typical of January and "a bit staccato" as Spanish supplies start to take over from the tail end of the Egyptian, Moroccan and Israeli seasons. 
Pricing for soft fruit in Southampton has held firm week to week on blueberries and blackberries, with fruit from Argentina and Mexico respectively. Prices of strawberries and raspberries have eased slightly in the last week with strawberries at 80p for 250g, down from 100p, and raspberries down 80p at 170p for 125g. 
Courtesy of the Fresh Produce Journal - http://www.freshinfo.com/index.php?s=n&ss=nd&sid=54915&s_txt=&s_date=0&ms==10&ntype=nws

Austerity Warning for Foodservice

Published: 15 Jan 2012

In 2012, the foodservice and hospitality sectors are going to face the toughest down-turn conditions yet, a senior market analyst is warning. 
Peter Backman managing director at Horizons has warned that 2012 brings a fourth year of retrenchment, with consumer confidence worsening and unemployment set to rise. He foresees that 2012 is likely to be a worse trading year for eating out than 2011, despite the influx of visitors generated by the Olympic Games in London and the Diamond Jubilee. 
Backman said: "Although the number of corporate failures in the UK eating out sector has been fairly small, balance sheets have been stretched during 2011 and it will not take much to see the rate of failures rise, probably as early as the first quarter. 
"High street restaurant operators will continue offering customers discounts, meal deals and money-off vouchers to improve traffic, which will depress their profit margins, although the anticipated fall in food costs this year will help counteract the cost of discounts." 
The industry needs to continue to innovate and "reinvent itself" in order to survive and adapt to change, according to Horizons. "The businesses that don't embrace change are those that will suffer this year, but outlets that adapt to the demands of the new consumer by offering something different, focussing on good quality for a reasonable price, are those that will survive the year ready to focus on growth when consumer demand improves," concluded Backman. 
Courtesy of the Fresh Produce Journal - http://www.freshinfo.com/index.php?s=n&ss=nd&sid=54863&s_txt=&s_date=0&ms==30&ntype=nws

Families encouraged to eat healthily on the cheap

Published: 4 Jan 2012

An effort to convince families in England that they can eat healthily on a budget is being launched. 
Four million recipe leaflets will be mailed to families already signed up to the government's Change 4 Life public health campaign. 
Three supermarket chains have also agreed to offer discounts on products such as fruit, vegetables and fish. 
But Labour said ministers do not take public health seriously and the drive is an "advertisement for big business". 
Meanwhile, celebrity chef Ainsley Harriott has helped devise a cookbook promoting healthy dishes, with recipes that can be created for under £5. 
He has also been filmed performing cooking tutorials which will be posted on the Change 4 Life website. 
Among the meals being promoted are vegetable soup, fish pie and sweet and sour chicken. 
Many of the ingredients will be discounted at the three supermarket chains signed up to the campaign - Asda, Co-op and Aldi - although it is not being revealed how big the discounts will be 
Public health minister Anne Milton said: "The new year is a good time to think about losing weight. The Supermeals campaign will give us all some great ideas for balanced meals on a budget." 
Mr Harriott added: "Sometimes the thought of making meals from scratch can seem a bit daunting, but I have always tried to assure people that cooking at home can be really quick, easy and doesn't need to break the bank." 
But Labour criticised the move. 
Shadow public health minister Diane Abbott said: "They're calling this public health but it's just a glorified advertisement for big business. This is a government that doesn't take its responsibility around public health seriously. 
"Some areas in inner cities are fresh food deserts so families fall into eating takeaway chicken and chips." 
Health benefits 
Dale Rees, a spokesman for the British Dietetic Association, said the initiative was a positive step because the recipes would help those who wanted to cook but did not know the ingredients involved, the steps needed to prepare them or how to cook adhering to a budget. 
"Evidence shows that people who eat a diet low in fat, added sugars and salt are less likely to develop chronic diseases in later life. You can protect against heart disease, for example, plus you're less likely to be obese and have weight-related health problems," said the dietician. 
Referring to the issues raised by Ms Abbott, he said some local shops often carried fresh fruit and vegetables but some groups - people without cars, elderly and disabled people - found it hard to access such produce in inner city "blackspots". 
Such people, he said, could be eligible for deliveries of hot meals, adding: "We need to tackle those blackspots to make sure fresh food is made available for those people. But that shouldn't stop the promotion of eating healthy food on a budget." 
Courtesy of the BBC - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-16365230 
Fresh Pod can play a vital role in this, by allowing families to extend the life of the fresh produce they buy, saving on waste and money. 
One Fresh Pod could save the average UK family over £400 per year, as well as help the UK cut down on the current 6.7 million tonnes of food waste that we send to landfill each year. 
For more information on Fresh Pod and how this little green ethylene control marvel can save you money, call 08456 345 185 or email info@freshpod.co.uk

Fresh Pod Link-up with the Pod; EDF Energy's Programme for Greener Schools

Published: 7 Dec 2011

Fresh Pod are delighted to announce that we are linking up the Pod, EDF Energy's programme for greener schools. 
The Pod, EDF Energy's programme for greener schools is an online educational programme for teachers of 4 to 14 year olds. The Pod has free lesson plans, fact sheets, games and activities that are linked to the curriculum and span a range of environmental topics. The Pod also runs three national environmental campaigns each year to help the whole school, parents and the local community engage in a more sustainable lifestyle.  
As part of the link-up Fresh Pod are able to offer all registered schools 10% OFF their Fresh Pod, guaranteed to save the school money and cut back on the amount of food they waste each year. 
Over 14,500 schools are already registered with the Pod, to find out more or to register visit www.jointhepod.org

Enviro-Pod Solve Eternal Christmas Dilemma & Offer 10% Off Entire Range

Published: 2 Dec 2011

Enviro-Pod have solved that eternal dilemma of what to buy the person who has everything - with a range of sustainable, unqiue and innovative gift ideas, which will even save the lucky recipient money.  
To prove that environmental responsibility needn't cost the earth this Christmas, Enviro-Pod are delighted to be able to offer their full-range of products, with a massive 10% off their entire range. This fantastic offer, is applicable all through the run-up to Christmas, allowing you to shop for unique, thoughtful gifts, from the comfort of your own home, whilst making fantastic savings.  
The offer includes the ever-popular Fresh Pod, which would save the average UK household over £400 every year, by making their fresh produce last up to four times, longer and will help stop families across the country cut back on the amount of food they have to throw away untouched at this time of year.  
With so much food being purchased at this time of year, the problem of storing it safely rears its ugly head. Luckily Chill Pod has the solution with a range of bags which comfortably outperformed all similar bags in the marketplace. Independent tests by the University of Bristol proved that Chill Pod can keep chilled produce at a safe temperature for up to 8 hours, without the need of electricity, meaning that Chill Pod can be ideal temporary storage for all those festive goodies this December.  
Alongside Fresh Pod is a literal lifesaver - Cosy Pod. At a time of year when we are all feeling the effects of increased fuel prices to heat our homes, Cosy Pod can help keep our loved-ones warm this winter. This is not just another thermal blanket; such are the insulating properties of Cosy Pod, the stylish blankets are used by Mountain Search and Rescue teams and a North Sea diving company.  
In fact there is something for everybody this Christmas with the offer extended to cover Fish Pod, K-9 Pod and Horse Pod.  
For more information visit - http://www.thelivelycrew.co.uk/?p=christmas.offers

No Let Up in Greenhouse Gas Rise

Published: 21 Nov 2011

Concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere rose to yet another high in 2010, according to the UN's weather agency. 
Levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) - the major contributor to climate change - rose by 2.3 parts per million between 2009 and 2010. 
That exceeds the average for the past decade of 2.0 parts per million, the World Meteorological Organization says. 
The latest round of UN climate talks begin in South Africa in two weeks. 
"The atmospheric burden of greenhouse gases due to human activities has yet again reached record levels since pre-industrial time," said WMO Secretary-General Michel Jarraud. 
The gas that is of greatest concern to policy makers looking to stem human-induced climate change is CO2. 
Courtesy of the BBC - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-15820162

EDP asks - Does it Pay to be Green? It does with Fresh Pod

Published: 26 Oct 2011

The Eastern Daily Press (EDP) is today asking; does it pay for businesses to be green? 
With Fresh Pod it most certainly does, both on a consumer and commercial basis. 
Every year in the UK we throw away over 6.7 million tonnes of untouched food, every year. This costs the average UK household over £600 per year. 
Commercially, roughly 50% of produce is lost between being picked and purchased, and is another huge figure which Fresh Pod could help lower. 
For more information on Fresh Pod's commercial or consumer ethylene control solutions, please contact Robert on 08456 345 185.

Raw vegetables and fruit 'counteract heart risk genes'

Published: 12 Oct 2011

People who are genetically susceptible to heart disease can lower their risk by eating plenty of fruit and raw vegetables, a study suggests. 
It says five or more daily portions should be enough to counteract culprit versions of a gene on chromosome 9, thought to be possessed by a fifth of people of European ancestry. 
Healthy diets appeared to weaken its effect. 
The US researchers investigated more than 27,000 people for their work. 
The findings were published in Plos Medicine journal. 
These participants came from from around the globe, including Europe, China and Latin America. 
The results suggest that individuals with high risk 9p21 gene versions who consumed a diet packed with raw vegetables, fruits and berries had a similar risk of heart attack as those with a low-risk variant of the same gene. 
Researcher Prof Sonia Anand, of McMaster University, said: "Our results support the public health recommendation to consume more than five servings of fruits or vegetables as a way to promote good health." 
The scientists, who also included staff from McGill University, say they now need to do more work to establish how diet might have this effect on genes. 
Judy O'Sullivan of the British Heart Foundation said the findings should serve as a reminder that while lifestyle and genes could increase heart risk, the way the two interacted with each other was also very important. 
"The relationship between the two is often very complicated and we don't yet have all the answers, but the message appears to be very simple - eating lots of fruit and vegetables is great news for our heart health." 
Courtesy of the BBC - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-15254471

Fresh Pod team up with Home Grown Revolution

Published: 11 Oct 2011

Fresh Pod are teaming up with Home Grown Revolution to promote promote healthy eating and high quality fresh produce which lasts. 
Home Grown Revolution makes stylish, long-lasting timber raised vegetable beds that come complete with integrated frames and a selection of covers to help you protect your crops all year round. Whether you need a butterfly net to keep the cabbage whites off your broccoli, enviromesh to ward off the carrot fly and leek moths, or a polytunnel to keep things warm and dry in the winter, that can help you get the most from your bed across the whole of the growing year. 
As part of their work Home Grown Revolution will also be promoting Fresh Pod and ethylene control as the most effective way at protecting fresh produce from the negative effects of ethylene. 
For more information on Home Grown Revolution please visit http://www.homegrownrev.co.uk

Children's packed lunches 'lack fruit and veg'

Published: 3 Oct 2011

Parents are failing to put enough fruit and veg into their children's packed lunches, health experts have warned. 
The School Food Trust, which examined 3,500 packed lunches in England in 2009, says about 40% of lunchboxes do not contain any fruit or vegetables, compared with 10% of school dinners. 
It said parents should consider switching to school meals. 
Meanwhile, the World Cancer Research Fund has set up a website to give parents advice on healthier lunchboxes. 
It says the same sort of changes as those made when TV chef Jamie Oliver championed school dinners are now needed. 
It wants parents to ensure their children's packed lunches always contain at least two portions of fruits and vegetables. 
'Missed opportunity' 
WCRF head of education Kate Mendoza said: "There is no doubt Jamie Oliver helped achieve great things for the food served in school canteens. But as the nutritional content of school canteen meals has improved, the healthiness of the content of lunchboxes has been left behind. 
"It is disappointing that children are going to school with lunchboxes that are not playing their part in helping to encourage the kind of healthy diet that is so important for their future.  
"This is why we want to get across the message to parents that including a piece of fruit or using a portion of salad as a filling for a sandwich are positive things they can do for their children's health. 
"It can sometimes be difficult for parents to control what their children eat, particularly if they are passing shops on the way home from school or visiting their friends. But parents can influence what is in their packed lunches and the fact that not all of them are doing so is a missed opportunity." 
She said they were aiming to advise parents about healthy options - rather than telling them what not to put in as has happened in the past. 
Patricia Mucavele, research and nutrition manager at the School Food Trust, which offers its own advice on packed lunches, said, "School lunches are now the most nutritious choice for children and young people.  
"Packed lunches aren't as nutritious as school meals - they are typically higher in saturated fat, sugar and salt, and often contain foods that can't be provided in schools, such as sweets and salted snacks.  
"Making healthy packed lunches that give children the variety they need in their diet takes a lot of time and effort.  
"We have previously estimated that parents could spend almost eight days a year making packed lunches that meet the national standards for school food.  
"And when you look at how the prices compare, it gives parents wanting to give their children good food, and save time and money, something to think about." 
The trust's 2009 Primary School Food Survey, included an in-depth look at the contents of almost 3,500 packed lunches across 135 schools in England. 
It found 58% of those with packed lunches had items that could count towards their "five a day" fruit and vegetable target, compared with over 90% of those eating school meals. 
-Courtesy of the BBC

Fruit and veg top US 'Avoidable Food Waste' Report

Published: 29 Sep 2011

Fruit and vegetables have joined milk and yoghurt at the top of a report into avoidable food waste in the US. 
USDA's food loss estimates at the retail and consumer levels for 2009 shows that the avoidable food waste in the US amounts to as much as 50 million metric tonnes annually.  
The implications of this waste are significant. At least 123 million metric tonnes of CO2 are added to the atmosphere each year from the production, transport and disposal of the uneaten food - this translates to over 13 percent of all food-related emissions in the US and about 1.5 percent of total US emissions, and most of these emissions come from the production stage. The chart below breaks down these emissions by life-cycle stage and commodity type. 
A preliminary cost estimate suggests that US consumers and businesses are wasting nearly $200 billion worth of raw food commodities annually.  
Courtesy of http://www.environmentalleader.com/2011/09/28/the-anatomy-of-food-waste/

Government Joins Fresh Pod in Fight Against Food Waste

Published: 15 Sep 2011

The government is join Fresh Pod in the fight against food waste by scrapping "sell-by" dates on packaging. 
Like our pod, which uses ethylene control to naturally maintain freshness and naturally preserve the longevity of food, cutting waste and saving families over £650 per year - the government is hoping for a similiar result by removing information they believe is misleading from packaging. 
The BBC is quoted as saying "The UK throws away about £12bn of edible food each year and critics say confusing packaging is partly to blame. 
The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) says five million tonnes of edible food is discarded by UK households annually - the equivalent of £680 for a household with children. 
Environment Secretary Caroline Spelman said confusion over food labelling was responsible for an estimated £750m of the £12bn edible-food wastage each year." 
Fish and soft cheeses will escape the sweeping regulations. 
Whilst congratulating the government on the iniative to help cut food waste, we believe that more needs to be done to educate people on the money-saving potential of naturally preserving our food using inivative solutions such as Fresh Pod and Chill Pod.

Commercial and Consumer Boosts for Fresh Pod

Published: 13 Sep 2011

The potential of Fresh Pod to provide measurable savings to consumers and businesses alike has received a boost following Green Build and a visit to the New Spitalfields Market. 
At Green Build we once again met a raft of interesting businesses and individuals, who share our ethos on doing all we can to cut unnecessary waste, while saving money. 
Our visit to Spitalfields in London also left us feeling inspired as to the massive positive difference ethylene control can have on improving the bottom-line of businesses both large and small. 
For more information on how Fresh Pod can help you and your business save money, call 08456 345 185.

2011 apple and pear season could be longest on record

Published: 9 Sep 2011

The 2011 apple and pear season is all set to be the longest on record, thanks to an ingenious product which can naturally extend the post-harvest life of Britain's favourite fruits, Fresh Pod. 
Like all fruit and vegetables, apples and pears both produce ethylene gas as they age and ripen. Ethylene gas is odourless, tasteless and builds up in storage areas, chillers and distribution containers causing produce to rot prematurely. According to independent research by the University of California between 25-46% of post-harvest produce is lost due to the effects of ethylene, with apples and pears highly sensitive to the effects of the gas. Recent independent research from QMS Agri Science Fresh Pod has been proven to eliminate over 95% of ethylene, as well as eliminating viruses, sour rot, blue mould, brown mould, fungi and air-borne bacteria from storage environments. 
Whilst ethylene gas is used under controlled conditions as a ripening agent, even small amounts of ethylene during shipping and storage causes fresh produce to deteriorate faster. Vehicle emissions, plastics, smoke and fluorescent lights all increase ethylene gas levels and can cause serious damage to post-harvest produce. Therefore, controlling ethylene levels, by using Fresh Pod, post-harvest will extend the life-cycle of the commodity, increasing yield and saving money. 
Independent tests have also proven Fresh Pod also improves the quality of produce. For example, in apples, Fresh Pod is proven to maintain firmness and acidity, reducing scald and loss of crunch in both chilled and non-chilled environments. As if that wasn't enough, after storage use, Fresh Pod's contents make a great, natural and nutritional fertiliser.

Fresh Pod at Green Build

Published: 8 Sep 2011

Fresh Pod will be attending Green Build at Felbrigg in Norfolk this weekend - 10/11th September 2011. 
The event brings together the best in eco-friendly products, practices and technological solutions, from across East Anglia and beyond. 
The event takes place at Felbrigg Hall on Saturday and Sunday 10-11th September and is FREE to visit.

Families Throw Away £12 Worth of Food A Week

Published: 19 Aug 2011

According to Andrew Osbourne of Waste Awareness Wales, families will throw away £12 of food away each week, during the summer holidays. 
In launching WASTE Awareness Wales are calling on people to follow their top tips to reduce waste and save money over the summer holidays. 
Thousands of Welsh families are hitting the beach, the countryside or parks in search of fun in the sun. 
But the prices of picnic and barbecue costs can mount, which is why Waste Awareness Wales is urging people to follow their advice. 
Courtesy of http://www.walesonline.co.uk/go-green/2011/07/28/how-to-avoid-food-waste-91466-29123705/#ixzz1VTBZaIpd

Teens 'Not Getting Enough Fruit and Vegetables'

Published: 28 Jul 2011

Just one in 13 teenage girls is getting their recommended five portions of fruit and vegetables a day, official government data shows.  
But boys in the 11 to 18 age group did little better, with just one in eight eating the right amount, the National Diet and Nutrition Survey found.  
Adults ate more on average, with a third getting their five-a-day.  
The poll of more than 2,000 adults and children also raised concerns about other areas of diet.  
Consumption of saturated fats for adults aged 19 to 64 was a tenth above recommended levels, while the majority of participants were found to be not getting enough oily fish.  
But it was the diet of teenagers that raised the most concern.  
The average consumption of fruit and vegetables for girls aged 11 to 18 was 2.7 portions with just 7% getting five-a-day. Nearly half of them are not getting enough iron in their diet either.  
For boys, the average was 3.1 portions with just 13% getting five-a-day.  
Chief Medical Officer Professor Dame Sally Davies said she was concerned about the figures for teenagers.  
"Eating and being active can help prevent serious illnesses such as cancer and heart disease later in life," she added.  
The survey drew on findings from interviews, diaries and blood and urine samples taken during 2008 and 2010. It marks the start of an ongoing programme of research which will inform government policy.  
As such, direct comparisons with previous studies are difficult - although similar research was carried out in the 1990s which showed on most counts eating habits were improving slightly.  
But Dr Alison Lennox, one of the nutrition experts involved in the research, said there was still a "long way to go".  
However, she did highlight the progress being made with younger children who seemed to be eating fewer sweets, fizzy drinks and chocolate.  
Health minister Paul Burstow said the government was rolling out a a new campaign to increase fruit and vegetable consumption.  
He added: "We have not seen the improvements we should have."  
Courtesy of the BBC - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-14234454

Fresh Pod a Crowd Pleaser at Fruit Focus

Published: 21 Jul 2011

Fresh Pod was a crowd pleaser at Fruit Focus yesterday. 
The annual event, held in East Malling, Kent, attracts fruit farmers, distributors and product manufacturers from around the world. 
Exhibitors and visitors alike were amazed by Fresh Pod and the dramatic effects it can have on the longevity of fresh produce by removing the ethylene from storage areas. Ranging from the consumer sachets, through to hanging ethylene control baskets for lorries, cold stores and shipping containers, right up to air filters which can cleanse entire warehouses of ethylene, Fresh Pod proved an interesting potential solution to produce wastage and as a money-saving device for everyone.

Fresh Pod Link Up with St Thomas' Church of England School

Published: 14 Jul 2011

Fresh Pod are delighted to announce that we have linked up with St Thomas' Church of England school in Rotherham. 
The link up will see Fresh Pod donate £4 to the school for every Pod sold quoting the unique code KHP/JW. 
St Thomas', whose school motto is "stand fast & stand proud", are eager to promote cutting food waste, both at the school and in the wider community, so approached Fresh Pod to see how we could help. 
We were only too happy to donate 10 Fresh Pod's to the school to use as prizes at their Fayre and to set up this offer, which we hope will contribute to helping the school raise vital funds, whilst promoting sustainable living. 
If you're school would like to follow the lead of St Thomas' please contact Andy on 08456 345 185 for more information. 
St Thomas', who are based on Meadow View Road, Kilnhurst, Rotherham are holding a Summer Fayre on Friday 15th July 2011 from 2:30pm.

Traditional British Fruit makes a Cherry Welcome Comeback

Published: 11 Jul 2011

Slice of Britain: In the Garden of England, students race the clock to get a bumper harvest to market in peak condition. 
Clad in brown wellingtons and matching sunglasses, Bryan Neaves gulps the fresh air from Dover and is filled with chest-thumping pride. It was, after all, not far from his farm near Sittingbourne, in Kent, that Henry VIII ordered Britain's first cherry orchard to be built in the county after he tasted the fruit in Flanders. 
"This is God's country for producing cherries," Mr Neaves exclaims. Cherry picking in the UK is beginning to blossom once more, with yields and varieties not seen for decades. 
It was not always thus. Although three generations of Neaveses have grown the fruit at Little Sharsted Farm, they have had to keep the faith through some tough times. 
At one time English summers were synonymous with hundreds of cherry orchards lined with trees bearing juicy, dark clusters of Bigarreau Gauchers or Elton Hearts. But then came the onslaught of foreign imports grown more economically in warmer southern European countries. Soon everyone was asking the obvious question: why should Britain be producing something that Europe can do faster, cheaper and in the right climate? The answer was it shouldn't: UK farmers stopped cultivating the fruit. 
Such was the decline that, by 2008, only 750 acres of British countryside were left devoted to cherry orchards. "The fruit had become so delicate that just a drop of rain would see them bruised and ruined," says Mr Neaves. "Farming changed, foreign offerings emerged and cherries were expensive to cultivate and did not make money." 
But he is desperate to see people buying British cherries again. Certainly, the expectation is that this year's season, which lasts until the end of the month, will see a bumper year for the fruit, with crops returning to levels not seen since 1985. Some 3,000 tonnes of cherries are due to be harvested by the end of the season, more than seven times the amount produced in 2000. 
In part, celebrity chefs such as Raymond Blanc can claim some credit, with campaigns that encouraged supermarkets to buy British. A more important reason for the increase is the EU subsidies for farmers who plant new breeds that produce more cherries on smaller trees. Varieties grown on the Gisella 5 rootstock produce firmer varieties with skins that do not split so easily. 
British cherry farmers' biggest enemy has always been the elements. Their newest weapon has been the introduction of £20,000-an-acre cherry tunnels, designed to protect the trees from rain and cold. As we walk into the one of Mr Neaves's 30 arched tents, light skitters off the white polythene and the humidity increases: the climate becomes something akin to the Mediterranean. 
An army of 50 workers - students from Lithuania, Bulgaria and Poland - sporting belt-on wicker baskets is working frantically to ensure the fruit is picked and packed for delivery to supermarkets within 24 hours. 
British cherry farms are capitalising on this geographic advantage, knowing they can hit supermarket shelves fresher and less tainted by transportation than their European competition. 
The farm is run like an eastern European summer camp, with shopping trips and car boot sales organised as part of the weekend activities for the pickers. And the workers have little time to talk: with just £4 per crate packed, they are not keen on interruptions. 
Svetlana Maneva, 22, from Yambol in Bulgaria, is here for her second summer, but she is not yet a total convert to the British cherry. "In Bulgaria, maybe the cherries are more natural and sweeter," the economics student says, glancing furtively at her employers. 
The sense of anticipation this summer extends beyond the farms of Kent. "The yields are substantially larger - we're expecting 5.5 tonnes per hectare industry-wide this year and expect this to continue to increase from now on," says Nick Marston of the English cherry industry. Options are varied and include Kordia, a large, lighter-coloured fruit with a pungent taste, Napoleon Biggareau, a sweet, crunchy variety that dishes out a kick. Other colours are available, including the Governor Wood, a deep-flavoured yellow fruit with a dash of pink on the skin, and even the "white" cherries, named after their creamy-coloured exterior. 
Carol Waller, 48, a mother of three, carefully plucks the shiniest Penny cherries. "I do this to support my children and buy their shoes," she says good-humouredly. 
"It's really hard nowadays, though. I live at Boughton in Northamptonshire, where they won't give British people a job. I've been trying for three years in other English farms. Most say we're unreliable and we don't want to work." 
Clearly, Little Sharsted Farm does not share this view. Mr Neaves is happy to hire anyone who wants to work and is enjoying his moment in the sun. 
"Little Sharsted has always been our farm and will remain this way," he says. Henry VIII would, no doubt, have approved. 
Courtesy of The Independet - http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/this-britain/a-traditional-british-fruit-makes-a-cherry-welcome-comeback-2309906.html 
Extend the cherry season, with a Fresh Pod. By controlling the levels of ethylene when storing cherries, you can keep them at their delicious best for up to four times as long.

Introducing the Adventures of the Fresh Pod Banana - Our Jet Setting Ethylene Control Hero

Published: 7 Jul 2011

We are delighted to announce the launch of the adventures of the Fresh Pod Banana on our Facebook page. 
Our Ethylene Control hero will be popping up around the globe in the coming weeks, months and years. Kicking us off from his home at our Norwich HQ, the Fresh Pod Banana is off and underway and has already taken in the glamorous destinations of Peterborough and the Swiss Alps. 
Further trips to France, Sweden, London and further afield will follow so make sure you check out Facebook and keep an eye on when our hero visits a town near you at http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.238590012832414.68055.189044447786971

BBC Focus Magazine Predicts Arrival of Fresh Pod a Decade Late

Published: 22 Jun 2011

BBC Focus Magazine has predicted the arrival of Fresh Pod for the year 2020. 
The science magazine features a predicted day in the life of the average person in nine years from now. As part of the day the magazine predicts that man will be able to keep fresh produce fresh for longer by placing it in a bag containing a natural compound that "inhibits the ethylene - the naturally produced gas that encourages fruit to ripen" - exactly as Fresh Pod currently does. 
The BBC Focus team, having clearly not yet heard of the revolutionary green wonder, call their 'fictional' product "FrootStore". Rest assured however we will contact them to pass on the good news. 
The future is here. The future is Fresh Pod.

E-Coli Outbreak Could Cause Storage Problems for Fresh Produce Growers

Published: 13 Jun 2011

A drop in sales of fresh produce could cause a storage problem for growers stuck with more produce than they were expecting. 
In a scenario which Fresh Pod would be ideal at preventing, growers may lose produce which over ripens before they can get it to market. 
A Morrisons spokesman admitted to the Fresh Produce journal that they have seen a small drop in sales, whilst Ronny Liu a foodservice supplier added that some of their regular customers had cancelled orders. 
In each case a Fresh Pod commercial unit would assist the grower by allowing the produce to be kept fresher for up to four times as long, using purely natural, non-toxic ways to eliminate the storage environment of ethylene.

Cucumbers and Tomatoes to be Grown in Space, whilst Asda Joins Fight Against Food Waste

Published: 11 Jun 2011

News has emerged that astronauts are planning to grow cucumbers during a six-month stay on board the International Space Station. 
According to the Fresh Produce journal, Satoshi Furukawa and Sergei Volkov will attempt to grow the produce on board to allow astronauts to cultivate their own food in future. 
Of course, they could take ready grown produce alongside a Fresh Pod with them into space and enjoy fresh produce for up to four times as long, but it is a noble attempt at improving space-diet nonetheless. 
It has also emerged that leading UK supermarket Asda have joined Fresh Pod in the fight against food waste, with a product designed to aid portion control but does not stop the ageing of produce by eliminating ethylene in the manner Fresh Pod does.

Parent Company Launch New Website with Celebratory FREE Marketing Diagnostic

Published: 9 Jun 2011

The parent company of Fresh Pod, marketing and events agency, The Lively Crew has today launched their new website - www.thelivelycrew.co.uk.  
To celebrate the launch, The Lively Crew are offering a FREE marketing diagnostic for visitors to the site.  
The new website will also feature all the latest news on Fresh Pod.

Coming Soon - the Adventures of the Fresh Pod Banana

Published: 7 Jun 2011

Keep an eye on the website in the next few days for the global adventures of the Fresh Pod banana.

80 Fresh Pod's on Offer as Fresh Pod Featured in 'Take a Break'

Published: 19 May 2011

Fresh Pod is featuring in the May/June edition of popular UK magazine 'Take a Break'. 
The issue, which goes on sale today, features an exclusive competition to win a Fresh Pod, with over 80 separate Fresh Pod's. 
For your chance to win, buy this month's edition and simply complete the tear-out form. 
Good luck!

Ethical Living Prize Winners Announced

Published: 18 May 2011

We are delighted to announce that the 3 lucky winners of our competition in association with www.ethical-living.org are: 
Emily Beere 
Jane Lock 
Carrie Rocha 
All 3 have won themselves a Fresh Pod kit, supplying themselves with fresher fruit and veg for the next 2 years - with an associated saving of £840 each! 
Keep an eye on our website, Facebook page and Twitter for upcoming competitions and offers. 
Also make sure you sign up for the Fresh Pod newsletter online for even more exclusive offers and chances to win.

Lack of Rain Could Cause Food Prices to Rise

Published: 17 May 2011

Britain should prepare for a drought this summer and crops have already been "irreversibly" damaged by this year's warm weather, the Environment Secretary disclosed last night. 
Caroline Spelman said that water companies' drought preparations are being reviewed as several areas of the country are already "water stressed". 
She met with farm leaders yesterday who have warned the Government that this year's food harvest will be earlier and the yield lower. The situation could force up food prices even higher, farming experts warned, with the price of vegetables particularly likely to be affected later this year. 
According to the latest inflation figures from the Office for National Statistics, food prices are already 4 per cent higher than a year ago. 
England and Wales has recorded the lowest rainfall in March and April since 1938 with the warmest spring in centuries. The water levels in some rivers are already being compared to those during the record drought of 1976. 
In some eastern counties just 5mm of water has fallen since the end of February. 
Last night, Mrs Spelman admitted that the dry weather has caused "irreversible" damage on agriculture but insisted "we don't have a drought yet". 
"Yes this has already impacted on agriculture and some of the damage is irreversible," she said. "The harvest will be earlier and the yield will be lower." 
Jenny Bashford, the water policy adviser at the National Farmers Union, who was at the meeting, said: "It may be shaping up to be as dry as 1976, but we are in a better position than we were back then. We are more water resilient, the water companies have more reservoirs." 
She said it was too early to say what the economic impact would be, but non-irrigated crops, such as wheat, barley and oilseed rape were already suffering. In Norfolk, farmers have started to irrigate cereal crops in a bid to mitigate losses. But using water on cereals so early is a gamble, because it means there will be less water available for potatoes and vegetables later. 
Each farmer who waters his crops has a licence which forbids them to use more water than a specified amount in a given year. 
Jeremy Boxall, the commercial manager of Linking Environment and Farming, an organisation that has 2,400 farmers as members, pointed out that most cereal crops were traded on a global market, and millers could buy their wheat from Ukraine or Canada if there was a shortage of supply in Britain. 
But he added: "The issue is shallow-rooted horticultural crops: cauliflowers, leeks, potatoes, some fruit. 
"The problem is that they could run out of water later in the year, causing problems not just for crops in the ground now, but for the ones yet to be sown. I'm pretty sure vegetable prices will go up. 
They must do, especially as most are grown in eastern and southern England, the worst hit by the dry weather." 
Mrs Spelman: "We're not talking about 1976, no, and as I said we aren't technically in a drought. It's dry. Some parts of the country are worst affected. 
"The Midlands where I come from is an area which is more water-stressed. The traditional very dry parts of the country like East Anglia are this time better placed." 
She added: "Everyone has a role to play to make sure we are prepared. It is dry but we don't have a drought yet. Some parts of the country are more water-stressed than others. 
"The most important thing is to get everybody together so we are prepared, and the water companies' drought plans are reviewed so we are as resilient as we can be." 
The Environment Agency will be reporting next week on the likelihood of a drought in the longer term, and how it might affect farmers, food production and consumers, including whether there will be a hosepipe ban in any areas. Last year, the north west, including the Lake District, suffered from a ban. 
Michael Lawrence, a forecaster at the Met Office, said average temperatures for the month so far are 2.1C (3.78F) above the long term average of around 10C (51.8F), making the month one of the hottest on record so far. 
The hottest May on record is 1833 when the average was 15.1C (59.2F). 
Rainfall is also below average in some areas with the south east receiving just 20 per cent of average rainfall so far, although in north west Scotland more than the total average rainfall has fallen for the month. 
"The chances of temperatures in May being above average are high," he said. "The chances are the South East will be higher than average." 
Over the next few days the country will be divided with rain and cooler temperatures in the north west but continued warm weather in the south east. 
A band of rain will cross the south east on Wednesday, although rainfall is expected to be light unless there are thundery showers later in the week. 
Maximum temperatures will rise from the late teens to mid twenties by the end of the week. 
The warm weather is expected to continue through the rest of the month but forecasts of rain are more uncertain with unsettled conditions meaning there could be significant downpours. 
Courtesy of The Telegraph - http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/agriculture/farming/8517376/Lack-of-rain-already-causing-crop-failures-Defra-warns.html

Fight Against Food Waste Becomes Ever More Important After Warmest and Driest Spring in UK History

Published: 4 May 2011

The fight against preventable food waste is becomingly increasingly important after news was released that the UK is experiencing the warmest and driest spring in its history. 
With rainfall down to around 50% normal levels and temperatures on average 3-5'C higher than expected at this time of year, the BBC's rural affairs correspondent Jeremy Cooke said that the lower-than-average rainfall had prompted some farmers to warn that food prices could rise in future. 
The dry conditions are already presenting challenges for those growing essential crops like wheat and means there is less grass for livestock, their correspondent added. 
A BBC Weather Centre spokesman said: "The UK-wide records began in 1910, but the central England temperature series goes back to 1659, making it the warmest April here for over 350 years." 
Courtesy of the BBC - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-13269741

Green Festival To Reveal Top Tips on Healthy Food and Cookery

Published: 3 May 2011

Top tips, cookery shows and free tastings during Peterborough Green Festival from Saturday 28 May to Sunday 12 June will demonstrate how good food choices support healthy lifestyles. 
The activity-packed two-week festival - run for the past 20 years by green charity Peterborough Environment City Trust (PECT) - opens with family-themed events filling Cathedral Square and St John's Square in the city centre. 
The festival, presented in association with Peterborough City Council's Travelchoice team, aims to help residents develop greater respect for the environment and adopt more sustainable lifestyles and transport options. 
The launch day programme includes a 'Ready Steady Cook' demonstration with support from the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Waste Partnership's 'Love Food Hate Waste' team. A panel of judges will select the most imaginative and tasty dishes. 
Later in the festival, residents will be given simple tips on how to save up to £50 per month on their grocery bill at a 'Love Food Hate Waste' workshop. The event, supported by the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP), will be held at The Love Local shop, 90 Central Avenue, Dogsthorpe, Peterborough, on Wednesday 1 June from 11am to 1pm. 
Riverford, the organic veg box company based at Sacrewell Farm just outside Peterborough, is supporting the Green Festival for the third consecutive year in 2011. 
The company will be handing out tasters of freshly cooked food from their stand at the Festival launch day, demonstrating that healthy food can be easy to make and delicious. Visitors will have the chance to taste locally grown strawberries, and learn how to make dishes such as broad bean risotto, grilled asparagus with orange and olives, and rhubarb and cinnamon cake.  
Riverford is also providing organic drinks and snacks at the Swish 'glamorous frock swap' at Westgate House on Thursday 2 June from 6pm to 9pm. There will be a further opportunity to learn about Riverford's produce, much of which is grown at the farm on Sacrewell, at the Bee Wild Big Lunch event at Ferry Meadows country park on Sunday 5 June from 11am to 4pm. 
The launch day programme will also include demonstrations of an innovative Fresh Pod device that prolongs the storage life of fresh fruit and vegetables four times longer than normal. The pod, using a replaceable sachet, naturally absorbs the ethylene gas given off by fresh produce during the ripening process. This keeps the produce fresher for longer saving the average UK household over £420 each year in avoidable food waste. 
The pod, which uses natural, environmentally-friendly absorbent material, is new to the UK but has been available in Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Canada and the USA for many years. 
PECT acting chief executive Rachel Huxley said: "WRAP estimates a shocking 6.7 million tonnes of food is wasted every year by UK households, costing the UK £10.2 billion annually. Yet better shopping, cooking and storage habits could prevent the waste of 61 per cent of food that is thrown away. 
"We hope the Green Festival will help people be more sustainable, and save money, when it comes to making healthy food choices." 
The two-week programme of green events and activities being held across Peterborough include: 
• Cycling treasure hunt at Ferry Meadows country park on Monday 30 May 
• Free screening of award-winning film 'Sharkwater' at the John Clare Theatre on Wednesday 1 June 
• Swish glamorous posh frock swap at Westgate House on Thursday 2 June from 6pm to 9pm 
• Free Bikeability training for children aged 10 years or above at Central Park on Thursday 2 June 
• Evening bike ride with barbecue at Willowbrook Farm, near Helpston, on Friday 3 June 
• A solar power demonsstration day at Notcutts Garden Centre, Oundle Road, on Saturday 4 June 
• Bee Wild Big Lunch picnic at Ferry Meadows country park on Sunday 5 June 
• Trashion Show at the Queensgate Centre on Thursday 9 June featuring catwalk demonstrations of recycled fashions, hair and beauty makeovers, dance and fitness routines and a presentation by Julie Hill, author of 'Secret Life of Stuff' 
• Springwatch fun day with RSPB at Top Lodge, Fineshade Woods on Saturday 11 June 
• Arts and cultural events throughout the fortnight in the 'Green Festival Pop-up Shop' in Peterborough city centre 
Full details of all Green Festival events are available from the programme, which can be found at www.pect.org.uk/greenfestival.

Fresh Pod Team Up With Ethical-Living.org

Published: 19 Apr 2011

Fresh Pod are delighted to announce we have teamed up with the good people at www.ethical-living.org, to offer 3 lucky readers a 12-month supply of Fresh Pod. 
Visit www.ethical-living.org/site/offers for more details. 
Both Ethical Living and Fresh Pod are on Facebook and Twitter - be sure to like and follow both for the latest news and offers.

Fresh Pod Gearing Up for Green Festival 2011

Published: 12 Apr 2011

At Fresh Pod we are busy gearing up for the 2011 Green Festival which is taking place in Peterborough from Saturday 28th May through to June 12th 2011. 
The 2011 Green Festival theme is 'sustainable transport' in the hope of encouraging everyone to leave the car at home and walk, cycle, and use public transport instead. 
Alongside this admirable initiative, Fresh Pod will be proudly displaying our own eco-credentials in reducing food waste and painlessly cutting household bills by naturally preserving fresh produce for longer. 
For more details about the Green Festival or Fresh Pod, contact Andrew on 08456 345 185 or email andrew@thelivelycrew.co.uk

2011 Fresh Pod Event Diary

Published: 30 Mar 2011

Fresh Pod is delighted to announce that it will be attending a range of environmentally responsible events during 2011. 
First up, we will have a stand at the Green Festival which is taking place on May 28th 2011 in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire. 
On July 20th 2011 we will exhibit at Fruit Focus in East Malling, Kent. 
We will also be attending North Norfolk District Council's annual Green Build event, which takes place at Felbrigg Hall on the picturesque North Norfolk coast over the weekend of 10/11th September 2011. 
We hope to announce more events soon so be sure to check back soon for when Fresh Pod will be at an event near you.

Fruit and Veg Now 'Too Costly' for the Hard Up

Published: 28 Mar 2011

High fruit and vegetable prices have started to take their toll on some of the most vulnerable groups in society, with those in low-income groups as well as young people under 25 saying they are increasingly having to cut back on fruit and veg because they can no longer afford them. 
Fresh produce has experienced considerable retail price inflation, with fruit prices up 7.9% in the 12 months to December 2010 and veg prices up 2.9% over the same period [CPI]. 
This has meant value sales of fruit and veg have continued to grow, even though volume sales were actually down 0.1% in the past 12 months [Kantar 52w/e 20 February 2011].  
Now new research by Mintel has revealed that nearly 70% of consumers across all age and income groups have noticed fruit and veg prices going up, with 26% of under-25s and 22% of those earning less than £15,500 a year claiming they had started to eat less because of cost. 
Worryingly, families with young children were among the most likely to cut back, with 30% of those with children under five and 26% of those with children under 10 claiming they were reducing the amount they ate. 
These shoppers are buying less fruit and veg even though supermarkets have boosted the affordability of fresh produce. Exclusive research for The Grocer by Assosia shows the big four and Waitrose were on average running nearly 40% more fresh produce promotions in 2010 than in 2008 when the recession hit, although the average saving offered to shoppers has fallen somewhat, by 9.6%. 
At the same time, there have been some high-profile price reductions. At 77p per kg, bananas are now 20p cheaper in the multiples than they were a year ago [BrandView.co.uk], with many supermarkets also offering lower prices on other healthy staples such as cucumbers. However, some exotics, as well as grapes and cauliflower, are now a lot more expensive in the mults than last year. 
Shoppers were cutting back on fruit and veg due to a combination of real price increases and a difficult-to-shift perception that fresh produce was "pricey", said Mintel food and drink ­analyst Amy Lloyd. 
"Even though retailers are putting on more promotions to protect consumers from some price rises, there are some shoppers who just think fruit and veg is expensive," she said. "There's an increasing feeling among certain segments of the population that they are being priced out." 
Part of the problem was that shoppers' perceptions of fruit and veg prices were often skewed by seasonality, added Nigel Jenney at the Fresh Produce Consortium. Few realised it was "normal" for produce prices to fluctuate throughout the year, meaning they sometimes placed too much emphasis on month-on-month changes even when prices were stable or only moderately up year-on-year. 
"Some shoppers may perceive this as confusing, especially if they are used to buying processed food products, which tend to be more consistent in price," Jenney said. The ­average family spent just £4 on fresh produce a week, he added, "so even where we're talking about some modest price increases, we're hardly talking about significant amounts." 
This week, Sainsbury's CEO Justin King revealed there had been a "quite ­dramatic" change in shopping habits since the start of the year, with shoppers cutting back by typically putting one fewer item in their weekly shop to avoid waste and save money. 
Courtesy of The Grocer

Wasted Food Equals 3% of Greenhouse Emissions in UK, Says New Survey

Published: 25 Mar 2011

A new report by environmental organization WWF which highlights the environmental impact of wasted food in the UK, found that food waste accounts for three percent of the country's greenhouse gas emissions; however according to video tutorial sites and environmental organizations there are a number of simple ways to reduce food wastage. 
The report published jointly by the WWF and the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP), released March 22, was one of the first to investigate the water and carbon footprint of wasted household food in the UK.  
The report found that the amount of water needed to produce food which is then wasted equals 6.2 billion cubic meters or the equivalent of six percent of the UK's water requirements; the 5.3 million tons of food wasted by UK households every year represents three percent of the UK's total domestic greenhouse gas emissions.  
However the UK is not alone in wasting food: American organization the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that the United States generates 34 million tons of food waste per year. 
The majority of this food is sent to landfills where, according to the EPA, as it decomposes it produces methane - a greenhouse gas 21 times more potent than carbon dioxide. The EPA also highlights the environmental benefits of recycling food waste as compost including - "improving soil health [and] increasing drought resistance."  
Courtesy of The Independent - www.independent.co.uk

Fresh Pod Sells Out Ideal TV - Again

Published: 19 Mar 2011

Fresh Pod has once more sold out on Ideal TV. 
Appearing on Sunday March 13th in a 6pm slot, Fresh Pod once more amazed viewers with its ability to protect fresh fruit, vegetables and cut flowers from the harmful ripening agent - ethylene. 
With the UK continuing to feel the squeeze of public cuts, Fresh Pod's ability to save the average UK household over £400 a year in food wastage alone, continues to ensure it's popularity amongst UK householders.

Fresh Pod Ready For Sunday Night TV Appearance

Published: 11 Mar 2011

Remember to check out Ideal World TV on Sunday night at 6pm to meet our little green money saving magician Fresh Pod. 
Sky customers tune in to channel 644, Virgin is 747 with Freeview 22. 
Alternatively check out www.idealworld.tv

Fresh Pod All Set For Another TV Appearance

Published: 25 Feb 2011

Fresh Pod is all set to make another Ideal TV appearance, with the popular shopping channel opening another slot for the revoltionary, green, money-saving machine. 
If you're not sure if or how Fresh Pod can possibly work, make sure you're watching Ideal TV at 18:00GMT, on Sunday March 18th 2011. 
There, the Ideal TV team will once again put Fresh Pod through it's paces. As many others, including Which Magazine, have done before. On each occassion Fresh Pod amazes with it's ethylene-busting effectiveness. 
Fresh Pod has sold out on all of it's previous Ideal TV airings, so don't delay getting yours, to avoid disappointment.

Fresh Pod Announces Exclusive Offer For Schools and Local Authorities

Published: 14 Feb 2011

Fresh Pod are delighted to announce a new exclusive offer on Fresh Pod's to all schools and Local Authorities, in a bid to help them beat the wave of Government cuts.  
If you are a school or Local Authority wanting to cut their food wastage and associated costs, please contact Robert on 08456 345 185 or email robert@thelivelycrew.co.uk.

Fresh Pod Sells Out On Ideal TV - Again

Published: 10 Feb 2011

Fresh Pod has once again appeared on Ideal TV - and sold out.  
Making it's most recent television appearance on Tuesday 8th February, in two separate slots, the revolutionary product which keeps fresh produce at it's best for up to four times as long, attracted huge sales.  
Due to it's consistently high performance, and positive feedback from customers, Fresh Pod is fast becoming a favourite on the specialist television shopping channel and is due to feature again soon.  
For more details on upcoming Fresh Pod TV appearances, keeping checking our website, 'like' the Fresh Pod Facebook page, or follow Fresh Pod on Twitter.

Fresh Pod To Feature On Ideal TV Tonight

Published: 8 Feb 2011

Fresh Pod is due to make another appearance on specialist TV shopping channel Ideal TV tonight at 5pm and 10pm. 
Fresh Pod has sold out on all it's previous Ideal TV appearances and show bosses are hopeful it's appearance tonight will once again see a rush, as people look to keep their produce fresher, for longer.

Fresh Pod joins Facebook and Twitter

Published: 31 Jan 2011

Fresh Pod has joined Facebook and Twitter, helping to spread our money-saving message to all four corners of the globe. Our new social media presence will also allow us to give you all the latest news and lots of tips to help ensure you always get the best out of your fresh produce. 
To find our Facebook page, just search "Fresh Pod" and we should be the top listing. 
To follow the official Fresh Pod on Twitter, search for "Freshpod1". 
Like our page and follow our tweets and make sure you point all your friends and family to us, helping them save over £400 every year in food wastage costs.

Fresh Pod will be at the Green Build Event this weekend!

Published: 8 Sep 2010

Fresh Pod we be at the Green Build event at Felbrigg Hall, North Norfolk this weekend 11-12th September. 
Come along and see us and find out how you can keep your fruit and vegetables fresher for longer!

Happy New Year from Fresh Pod

Published: 6 Jan 2010

Have a very green new year and enjoy the benefits of Fresh Pod. 
Save your household over £400 in avoidable waste this year by popping a Fresh Pod into your fridge and fruit bowl.  
Fresh Pod have some exciting events lined up 2010 and we're looking forward to meeting new fans of the little green pods. Don't forget to sign up to our newsletter to receive updates about our latest promotions and events.

Congratulations to Tracey Abbiss our Good Food Show Winner!

Published: 9 Dec 2009

Tracey entered her details in our prize draw at the Good Food Show Birmingham and is our lucky winner. She will recieve a beautiful fresh fruit hamper and year's supply of Fresh Pod. 
Make sure you are registered on our site to find out which events we're going to and you could be our next lucky winner.

Fresh Pod meets Jamie Oliver

Published: 7 Dec 2009

Fresh Pod was at the Good Food Show at the NEC, Birmingham recently. Our stand took pride of place next to none other than Jamie Oliver! 
The five days were spent spreading the green word - introducing people to the benefits of Fresh Pod. We had a great response and are already looking forward to next summers Good Food Show.

Have Yourself a Very Merry Green Christmas and make sure 2010 is a waste free and money saving year!

Published: 12 Oct 2009

Every year it is estimated that we produce 3 million tonnes of waste over the Christmas period. Of that approximately £275 million is festive food, according to the government waste body - WRAP.  
Barely a quarter of waste, packaging and uneaten food is likely to be recycled, most of the food ends up in landfill sites where it produces methane, a highly potent greenhouse gas. Dr Liz Goodwin, WRAP Chief Executive says: "This is only part of the picture. You also have to consider all the embedded energy used to produce, package, transport and deliver the food to our homes which produces the equivalent of at least 15 million tonnes of carbon dioxide every year." The cost of Christmas can't just be measured by the length your credit card bill in January. 
Fruit bowls brimming with exotic fresh produce and fridges crammed with fruit and vegetables to cater for extra guests, the majority of us cater for more than usual over the festive period. Often the additional purchases end up wasted as they become an unnecessary additional buy. Stephen Webb, of Waste Watch, said: "You only have to look at the number of black bags at the end of every street at the end of the holiday to see just how much waste is created at Christmas." An alternative to throwing away the excess is to pop a Fresh Pod in with the produce to extend their life by up to four times longer, taking them through to the New Year and beyond.  
Fresh Pod is a little green device that removes the ethylene gas given off naturally by fresh fruit, vegetables and flowers as they ripen. By safely and naturally removing the gas the ripening process slows, increasing the shelf life of fresh produce by up to four times longer than normal. Fresh Pod's help to reduce the amount of fresh produce wasted in the home, an average of £420 per year for every UK household.  
The pods make a great Christmas gift. Not only are they useful and will last a full year, much longer than many presents received, they will also save the recipient a considerable amount of money by reducing their food waste over the course of 2010.  
The true cost of waste is the adverse impact on the environment with research showing the amount of food waste we produce is a major contributor to the production of greenhouse gases in the UK. Fresh Pod helps to combat this growing problem by reducing households' carbon footprint

Fresh Pod at Norfolk Waste Conference

Published: 12 Oct 2009

Fresh Pod will be attending this year's Norfolk Waste Conference and AGM on the 21st October.  
The event will highlight waste issues such as packaging reductions by retailers, paper recycling and waste reduction. Council schemes like the Zero Waste Place initiative in King's Lynn borough council will be showcased, along with products like Fresh Pod. The event is open to all, to find out more information:  

Fresh Pod Available from Green Cone

Published: 12 Oct 2009

Fresh Pod is now being stocked by Green Cone, a fellow environmentally conscious company that offers simple solutions to dealing with food waste in the home. 
Have a look at their website:  

Fresh Pod Recommended by Sky News

Published: 30 Sep 2009

Sky News story 'How to Bring Down Your Food Costs' by Jo Dimbleby provided simple ideas to help save money and make the most out of your food shopping. Fresh Pod was featured in the article as a 'cunning...natural device' to help keep fresh fruit and veg in 'tip-top condition for many days longer than normal'.  
Have a full read of the story using the link below: 

Congratulations to Judith Critchley on Winning a Fruit Hamper and a Year's supply of Fresh Pod!

Published: 17 Sep 2009

We hope you enjoyed the Green Build event as much as we did and would like to thank you for taking the time to enter our prize draw. To show our appreciation we are going to continue the special offer on our Fresh Pods until the end of the month!  
If you didn't get the chance to buy one at the show you can still take advantage of our special offer.  
If you did you can continue to take advantage of the discounted price to start your Christmas shopping! The pods make great and thoughtful presents for students, family, friends and colleagues. 
Enjoy a 25% discount until the 30th September on your 12month supply of Fresh Pod. For just £9.95 you will save a considerable amount of money with less waste in your household - recently government statistics show the average household wastes £420 of fresh produce every year!  
Order your fresh pod online at www.freshpod.co.uk with promotional code GBFP09. 
Working together towards a fresher future.

Win a Fruit Hamper and a Years Supply of Fresh Pod!

Published: 11 Sep 2009

Fresh Pod will be at Felbrigg Hall this weekend, 12th & 13th Sept, taking part in the GreenBuild 2009 event.  
With loads to do and see why not stop by and see if you could win yourself a free fruit hamper and years supply of Fresh Pod! 
We'll see you there.

Increase your Support for Breast Cancer UK

Published: 11 Sep 2009

Increase your donation to Breast Cancer UK with Fresh Pod and Rosemary Conley Diet & Fitness. For every Fresh Pod sold using promotional code RCDF Fresh Pod will donate £4 to the charity.  
Rosemary Conley Diet & Fitness are hosting a range of fundraising activites in the Norfolk area to raise money for Breast Cancer UK.  
Fresh pod is a great product for those trying to eat more healthily as it keeps your fresh fruit and veg going longer - giving you a better chance of reaching for a health snack rather than a calorie-laden one.

Fresh Pod is Now Available in Bennetts

Published: 11 Sep 2009

Fresh Pod is now available in Bennetts stores and online!  
Visit your local store or www.bennettsonline.co.uk and see how Fresh Pod can start saving you money.

Fresh Pod teams up with Autism Anglia

Published: 17 Aug 2009

Local eco-company Fresh Pod are showing their support for Autism Anglia by donating £4 to the charity for every Fresh Pod sold with promotional code AAFP. 
Autism Anglia works in partnership with the National Autistic Society but receives no financial support from them they rely solely on the financial help and generosity of its supporters. In the UK it is estimated that 600,000 people are affected by Autism, that's about 28,000 in East Anglia alone. 
The charity has set up various services to help those affected: 
· Doucecroft School provides weekly boarding and day pupil education for children, aged 3 -19 years. A Further Education department in Kelvedon provides 15 day and boarding places for young people aged 16-19.  
· Adult Residential care currently has 52 places in five houses in Essex, three houses in Norfolk.  
· Community Support - provides care in seven independent living houses for 13 service users.  
· The Jigsaw Study Centre provides education, training and recreation for 50 adults each week.  
· Family Support Service provides advice and support for families and carers, professional and the emergency services.  
· Our own qualified Clinical Psychology Service and Speech & Language Therapists work with service users and staff to assess needs and implement strategies for well being and communication.  
Autism is a lifelong condition and, at present, there is no known cure, however, early intervention and individual specialised help and support can really assist people with autism to maximise their skills, achieve their full potential and lead a fulfilling life within the community. That's why organisations like Autism Anglia are so important, so help Fresh Pod show their support by using promotional code AAFP to purchase your Fresh Pod. Not only will you be supporting one of our local charities, but also with a Fresh Pod you will be helping to reduce your carbon footprint by reducing waste.  
Have a look at their websites to find out further information:  
www.autism-anglia.org.uk & www.freshpod.co.uk

The Real Cost of Waste

Published: 17 Jul 2009

A report published by WRAP about the food we waste has revealed some shocking statistics. 6.7million tonnes of food is wasted every year by UK households. And, an estimated 61% of food thrown away could be avoided if it had been managed better. 
Food waste costs us, the UK, £10.2 billion each year.  
We all waste food unnecessarily. On average, every one of us throws away 70kg of avoidable food a year - that's the weight of an average person! 
Food that looked or smelt bad or had gone mouldy account for 1.22million tonnes of food each year, which is where Fresh Pod comes in. With the ability to increase the shelf life of your fresh fruit and veg by up to 4 times, it gives you as much opportunity as possible to avoid wastage. 
So before we all throw away another 1.6billion apples why not try a Fresh Pod and see what a difference it can make.

Fresh Pod Supports Race for Life

Published: 29 Jun 2009

Fresh Pod is pleased to be supporting Race For Life across East Anglia this year with a £4 donation for everyone sold being donated to the Race For Life fund raising effort. 
Fresh Pod's MD took part in the race on Sunday in Bury St Edmunds as part of the Fresh Pod support. Instead of sponsoring our Fresh Pod runner purchase a Fresh Pod instead!  
Three reasons why you should: 
1. When you purchase a Fresh Pod online at www.freshpod.co.uk £4 will be donated to Cancer Research's fund raising efforts 
2. It is estimated each household throws away on average £420 of fresh produce into landfill site every year. Fresh Pod will reduce your household waste and help the environment  
3. Placing a Fresh Pod in your fridge or fruit bowl will save you a considerable amount of money on food waste 
Fresh Pod is completely safe and natural and guaranteed to work. Only £12.99 a kit will last you a full 12 months and will pay for itself time and time again.  
When making your purchase online make sure you use the promotional code R4LB when asked! 
Please pass this message onto your friends and help Cancer Research, the planet and your pocket all in one go.

Fresh Pod teams up with Scotland's Go Greener campaign

Published: 22 May 2009

Norwich based company Fresh Pod has teamed up with the Scottish Government's Go Greener campaign to promote the reduction of food waste at home, in businesses and in schools.  
Fresh Pod is particularly proud to be working with the Go Greener campaign due to a shared commitment to reducing the UK's environmental impact. The campaign aims to encourage Scots to make a series of small changes to their everyday lives in order to reduce their effect on global warming. Those wanting to make a positive impact to the environment are encouraged to take 10 steps to tackle climate change, including reducing and recycling household waste and purchasing more seasonal, unpackaged products. Fresh Pod is keen to share that message, as placing a pod in a fridge and fruit bowl is another small but highly effective change with positive environmental and economic results. Certainly, the reduction of food waste is particularly important at a time in which an average household throws away between £15,000 and £24,000 worth of food in a lifetime, two thirds of which is estimated to be fruit and vegetables. 
By placing a Fresh Pod in the fridge and fruit bowl, brown apples, wrinkly peppers and soft cucumbers become problems of the past! Fresh Pod extends the life of fruit and vegetables by up to four times using a completely safe and natural process, reducing waste for a healthier environment. The pod works by absorbing ethylene gas which causes fresh produce to age and ripen, giving you fresh fruit and vegetables for much longer. The Fresh Pod sachets also have the added benefit of killing bacteria, viruses, fungi and moulds often found in fridges. 
Through Fresh Pod's partnership with Go Greener, over 100 people have already pledged to take the steps towards following a greener lifestyle, with many more expected to follow. The message has and continues to be successfully promoted across the Scottish press, television and across the web.  
To find out more about the Go Greener campaign and for the chance to win a Fresh Pod visit www.infoscotland.com/gogreener

Fresh Pod recommended on Radio 2

Published: 13 May 2009

The word continues to be spread about the fantastic environmental and economic benefits of using Fresh Pods- they have this week been highly recommended on Radio 2's Breakfast programme.  
With the topic of the day concerning the alarming amount of food waste the UK produces every week, Fresh Pod was suggested as a highly effective way to significantly extend the life of fruit and vegetables. As a completely natural product, Fresh Pod's potential to reduce waste and positively impact the environment was recognised and championed by a Radio 2 listener, with the message nationally broadcast by Johnny Walker.  
The programme also highlighted the economic benefits of using a Fresh Pod, as it rightly concluded that it could save families £10 per week! 
To find out more about Fresh Pod visit the 'About Fresh Pod' page, or go to 'Buy Now' to start saving money and the environment!

Fresh Pod wins Green Award

Published: 10 Feb 2009

Fresh Pod's green credentials continue to be recognised - it has recently been announced as the winner of the Chairman's Award by the Norfolk Waste Partnership. 
Fresh Pod's Valerie Bullard accepted the award at the special ceremony held at County Hall, along with a host of other winners all rewarded for their positive contribution to the environment. 
Barry Coleman, chairman of the Norfolk Waste Partnership, commented: "We are delighted that there are so many inspirational efforts by local businesses, community groups and individuals to reduce waste." 
Placing Fresh Pod in your fridge extends the life of fruit and vegetables by up to four times, limiting the amount of food waste for a healthier environment.

We've Won Another Award

Published: 29 Dec 2008

Fresh Pod has won another award for being the environmental friendly product on a mission - watch this space - January 2009.

Your Rubbish Your Choice

Published: 2 Dec 2008

Norfolk County Councils award winning recycling magazine has featured Fresh Pod in the December 08 issue.

Fresh Pod appears in Sainsbury's Magazine

Published: 9 Nov 2008

Fresh Pod featured in the November edition of Sainsbury's magazine as the ideal little fridge companion to keep fresh fruit and vegetables fresher for much longer.

Fresh Pod gets the Green Light - Which report

Published: 20 Aug 2008

Fresh Pod has been thoroughly tested by the consumer magazine Which team passing their tests with flying colours.

And the winner is....Fresh Pod!

Published: 25 Mar 2008

At Fresh Pod we don't like blow our trumpet, but.. YES we've won an award. 
Fresh Pod was a finalist in the Best Design Innovation category at the Creative East Awards 2008. We beat off stiff competition form a number of firms across the region, before being the winner. 
Our entry was based around the environmental and health benefits of using Fresh Pod. Obviously the judges believe in these as strongly as we do.  
Colin,our chief here at Fresh Pod said "It is great to be recognised for our work through the Creative Industries Awards. Our mission with Fresh Pod is too make a difference to the environment, the Awards has helped us raise the profile of our mission and also gives us a belief in what we are doing is moving in the right direction"

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