The average family chucks out 26 cartons of orange juice, 52 rashers of bacon, 75 packets of peppers and as many as 78 bags of lettuce each year, according to new research.
According to the report, by food waste app Too Good To Go, we will also throw away 13 full pints of milk, 42 pots of dips such as hummus, 36 tubs of olives and 104 bananas.
According to Too Good To Go, 660,000 tonnes of food is needlessly wasted in the UK alone – a number that has barely changed since 2012. Much of the waste is down to confusing date labelling.
Almost a quarter (23%) claim they are baffled by the difference in meaning of terms such as ‘use by’, ‘sell by’ and ‘best before’, with 12% admitting to chucking food away on its ‘best before’ date, which is just an indication of when the food is as its freshest.
The survey was conducted to launch Too Good To Go’s Nose Sense campaign, which is encouraging Brits to smell best before food before throwing it in the bin.
More than half (56%) admitted they should probably smell food before throwing it out to check if it is still OK to eat, while less than one in 10 (7%) have never done this.
To help Brits identify when food is still edible, Too Good To Go has produced new ‘Smell By’ labels – a series of scratch ‘n’ sniff stickers.
Smell By labels contain scents, developed by perfumer and smell academic Harry Sherwood, of what gone-off best before foods really smell like.
‘These food waste findings are frightening, and hurt both the environment and our pockets.
‘To help everyone fight food waste together, date labelling needs to be clearer across the board, and focus on helping consumers better understand when they really must throw food away – these Smell By labels are a vital part of that journey.’
Co-founder of Too Good To Go
According to the 1,500 Brits surveyed, as many as 44% claim to feel guilty for the number of items they throw in the bin. 16% of British couples have argued over the amount of food waste in their household.
48% admit they are mostly concerned with how much money they are wasting than any environmental issues (food waste accounts for 8-10% global greenhouse gases).
The data also reveal each household could afford to feed 1.2 additional people a day with the food they throw away, equating to 438 extra mouths a year.
The data also suggest London is the food waste capital of the UK, with as many as 52% admitting they throw too much away. London is closely followed by Glasgow (50%).
The people of Newcastle are the least guilty of food waste, with just 27% saying they regularly waste food.
Get your own Smell By label pack from nosesense.co.uk