Tesco has launched an innovative, online 'food waste hotline', to help make it easier for suppliers and growers to pinpoint ongoing food waste hotspots, and work with the retailer in tackling them.
The 'hotline' is accessible to all Tesco suppliers via the retailer's online Supplier Network, a resource used by over 5,000 Tesco partners regularly. The 'hotline' will serve as a new link between these businesses and Tesco Product teams, and will enable them to alert Tesco to potential supply chain food waste and work together to take action.
Supply chain food waste accounts for a significant proportion of UK food waste. Tesco is committed to helping halve all UK food waste by 2025 and currently works closely with suppliers to reduce food waste where it occurs.
For instance, last summer's weather meant a warmer period than forecast and as a result the strawberry crop all ripened at the same time. Tesco's response was to take the whole crop and introduce large boxes of strawberries to stores at a market leading price – helping customers and avoiding food waste on farm. The 'hotline' will provide another way for this to continue, while enabling Tesco to work directly with suppliers to identify emerging as well as the more long term food waste issues they face.
Matt Simister, Commercial Director, Fresh Food and Commodities at Tesco, said: "At Tesco, we have no time for waste, and we are committed to reducing food waste wherever it occurs, from farm to fork.
The 'food waste hotline' is another little help we are making to achieve this with our suppliers. It helps our suppliers gain direct, easy access to our Product teams, and this will enable us to identify food waste hotspots and systemic issues and work in partnership to tackle them."