THE WELSH Assembly Natural Resources Minister, Carl Sargeant, has launched a new initiative aimed at preventing waste, reducing its production and increasing recycling across supply chains.
The Food Manufacture, Service and Retail Sector Plan advocates a whole food supply chain approach. This involves measures to encourage large businesses to collaborate and support their suppliers to adapt and reduce waste and supporting small and medium sized enterprises to innovate. Addressing inefficiencies in the manufacturing process can enable the entire supply chain to take steps to prevent food waste being created in the first place.
Speaking at the launch, Sargeant said: "This sector plan is broad, covering food and associated packaging waste and looking at the entire food supply chain after it has left the farm, from manufacturer to consumer. It focuses on the role that food manufacturers, wholesale suppliers, retailers and the service sector can play in reducing and recycling waste – and save money at the same time.
"It’s vital that Welsh businesses can be competitive and resilient in world markets. Ensuring a secure supply of materials, and making the most efficient use of materials is key to this, as well as the potential to make savings and become more efficient.”
According to WRAP the estimated financial value of a tonne of food and drink waste for food manufacturing is £950 per tonne, rising to £1,200 per tonne for the retail sector. Whilst many companies have focused on recycling or diverting waste from landfill, WRAP’s studies have demonstrated that significantly higher savings are available by adopting a waste prevention approach using relatively simple, low cost changes.