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On the prevention of avoidable food waste from domestic households

On the prevention of avoidable food waste from domestic households
On the prevention of avoidable food waste from domestic households
Unconsumed food impacts on the environment via the wasteful use of resources in its production and via its disposal. Householders would ideally only generate food waste that is not considered edible (unavoidable food waste) and the disposal of edible food (avoidable food waste) would be prevented, mitigating both the environmental impacts of food waste and reducing consumers’ wasted expenditure on uneaten food. This study aimed to elucidate if and how householders’ food waste behaviour might be changed via interventions in the form of a leaflet highlighting the impacts of avoidable food waste. The composition of avoidable food waste set out for kerbside collection was assessed in relation to interventions intended to reduce avoidable food waste and in relation to households’ economic status. Two parallel interventions were tested, setting out to householders the impacts of avoidable food waste on (1) the environment, and (2) personal finances. Avoidable food waste set out by affluent and low income households, considered in terms of total weight, life-cycle stage and product group, did not change significantly after delivery of either leaflet. Neither of the interventions tested had a discernible impact on the quantity and composition of avoidable food waste in these terms. We propose that initiatives to reduce food waste may be more successful if focused on positive actions to improve householders’ efficiency in their food use, directed by insight provided by analysis of avoidable food waste within product groups and in relation to life-cycle stage.
Food waste, household, waste prevention, Behaviour change
2313-4321
1-12
Shaw, Peter
935dfebf-9fb6-483c-86da-a21dba8c1989
Smith, Matthew
71241a5a-f7fe-41d0-b33c-7dfa63cce57f
Williams, Ian
c9d674ac-ee69-4937-ab43-17e716266e22
Shaw, Peter
935dfebf-9fb6-483c-86da-a21dba8c1989
Smith, Matthew
71241a5a-f7fe-41d0-b33c-7dfa63cce57f
Williams, Ian
c9d674ac-ee69-4937-ab43-17e716266e22

Shaw, Peter, Smith, Matthew and Williams, Ian (2018) On the prevention of avoidable food waste from domestic households. Recycling, 3 (2), 1-12, [24]. (doi:10.3390/recycling3020024).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Unconsumed food impacts on the environment via the wasteful use of resources in its production and via its disposal. Householders would ideally only generate food waste that is not considered edible (unavoidable food waste) and the disposal of edible food (avoidable food waste) would be prevented, mitigating both the environmental impacts of food waste and reducing consumers’ wasted expenditure on uneaten food. This study aimed to elucidate if and how householders’ food waste behaviour might be changed via interventions in the form of a leaflet highlighting the impacts of avoidable food waste. The composition of avoidable food waste set out for kerbside collection was assessed in relation to interventions intended to reduce avoidable food waste and in relation to households’ economic status. Two parallel interventions were tested, setting out to householders the impacts of avoidable food waste on (1) the environment, and (2) personal finances. Avoidable food waste set out by affluent and low income households, considered in terms of total weight, life-cycle stage and product group, did not change significantly after delivery of either leaflet. Neither of the interventions tested had a discernible impact on the quantity and composition of avoidable food waste in these terms. We propose that initiatives to reduce food waste may be more successful if focused on positive actions to improve householders’ efficiency in their food use, directed by insight provided by analysis of avoidable food waste within product groups and in relation to life-cycle stage.

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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 23 May 2018
e-pub ahead of print date: 1 June 2018
Published date: 1 June 2018
Keywords: Food waste, household, waste prevention, Behaviour change

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 421624
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/421624
ISSN: 2313-4321
PURE UUID: 4f57e388-8830-48de-8f3f-6a7c463e895e
ORCID for Peter Shaw: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-0925-5010
ORCID for Ian Williams: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-0121-1219

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 18 Jun 2018 16:30
Last modified: 18 Mar 2020 01:25

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