Food waste poses a huge environmental and social threat on a global scale. At the same time it offers one of the biggest opportunities for reducing our environmental impact whilst increasing food availability where it is needed most. The Feedback team have built a reputation as global thought leaders and a hub of international mobilisation on the issue.
Our goal is to achieve significant and measurable reductions in food waste on a global scale and in this way dramatically reduce the environmental impact of our food system.
We have made significant progress towards our goal in a number of ways. In the past year we have done so by: galvanising public action, movement building, influencing policy, and supply chain investigations.
Galvanising public action
We have seen our reach grow across Europe, to countries including Poland, Hungary, Spain, Belgium, and Greece amongst many others. In the UK, we have held a number of successful Feeding the 5000 and Disco Soup events. Our Gleaning Network has gone from strength to strength, saving over 142 tonnes of food that would have been wasted, engaging over 8,000 volunteers and expanding across the UK and Europe.
Partnerships are at the heart of Feedback’s work – we aim to build local coalitions of grassroots organisations, larger NGOs and stakeholders to create a food waste movement that thrives long after Feeding the 5000 has finished. We worked with one such grassroots movement, Disco Soupe, a celebratory chopping event whereby attendees transform fruit and vegetable waste or unsold food in to meals in a musical and festive atmosphere. The format has now spread across Europe and in to the US and Kenya as a result of Feedback’s work.
As well as working with grassroots groups and the public to create exciting and celebratory food waste initiatives, Feedback also offers expert advice and recommendations to international institutions (UN, European Commission), politicians, and decision-makers in the food industry. We were instrumental in persuading Tesco to become the world’s first retailer to commit to publicly reporting their audited food waste data.
We also successfully campaigned for the Groceries Code Adjudicator Bill which legislates to create fairer supermarket supply chains. The Pig idea campaign has re-ignited the debate around feeding food waste to pigs and Carrefour have publicly acknowledged Feedback’s influence in driving their actions to reduce food waste.
Supply Chain Investigations
Our work to uncover the hidden causes of food waste has led Feedback to step up our work in the Global South, investigating supply chain waste in Africa and Latin America caused by Western supermarkets.
From 2014-2015 we grew in terms of size and reach, but also in the number of campaigns that we now run. We continue to work on the Pig Idea, Gleaning Network and Feeding the 5000. We also kicked off Stop Dumping, a campaign calling for an end to unfair trade practices by western supermarkets that lead to huge amounts of waste in the supply chain both at home and in the global south. Our staff and volunteers in Brussels have also launched the Food Surplus Entrepreneurs Network, designed to harness and support the huge and growing interest in creating social enterprises and innovations using food that would have been wasted.
To learn more about our impact from 2014/15 please download Feedback’s Social Impact Report.
Many thanks to the Balcombe Charitable Trust for their support in publishing this report.