Courtauld Commitment 2025 signatories to double redistribution

16th January 2017

Courtauld Commitment 2025 business signatories are aiming to double the amount of food surplus they send for redistribution, and help other companies further increase the level of unsold food redistributed, by 2020. The signatories*, which includes many of the UK’s largest grocery retailers and food & drink manufacturers as well as hospitality & food service businesses, are collaborating with WRAP to ensure that where food surpluses cannot be avoided redistribution is the first option considered.

To communicate this drive, signatories have agreed a collective redistribution ‘ambition’ to work towards.

     ‘The Courtauld Commitment 2025 (C2025) is an ambitious voluntary agreement that brings together organisations across the UK food system - from producer to consumer - to reduce food and drink waste by 20% by 2025.

     Our shared vision is that, where food surpluses cannot be avoided, all UK food and drink companies should seek to redistribute surplus food ahead of any other option.

     As part of C2025, business signatories including leading retailers, manufacturers, and food redistribution organisations have agreed an ambition to work collaboratively with WRAP to double the amount of surplus food they redistribute by 2020 against a 2015 baseline’.

Based on a 2015 baseline of surplus food redirected by the current Courtauld 2025 business signatories, this will mean levels are likely to double to at least 30,000 tonnes within five years. That equates to enough food to prepare an additional 60 million meals, worth an estimated £60 million a year.

The ambition will help raise wider awareness amongst business partners within Courtauld 2025 signatories’ supply chains, and help encourage wider industry action. Signatory businesses will work with their suppliers to redistribute more food - retailers working with the manufacturers that supply them and trade associations encouraging their members to redistribute more.

To help facilitate this ambition, WRAP has today published a number of new case studies from Courtauld Commitment 2025 members, including;

  • Tesco Community Food Connection Programme, which is now in all 805 large Tesco stores and 122 convenience stores. This has donated over 5 million meals to date and will be rolled out to all Tesco stores in 2017l 
  • The Neighbourly national scheme with Marks & Spencer. Since the scheme started in 2015, M&S has provided 730,000 meals to 520 charities and community groups across the UK. 
  • The OLIO 'Food Waste Hero' pilot project with Sainsbury's. This saw 10,000 items of food shared between neighbours over 6 months. The “Food Waste Hero” programme is now live in over 30 business location, with OLIO helping to make food sharing happen in 31 countries; 
  • An Asda and Company Shopp partnership. A review of the Asda existing redistribution process found a new way to divert food with less than 3 days life via Company Shop. In addition to the 5 million meals redistributed through their existing 3 year partnership with FareShare, Asda has donated further surplus food to make over 110,000 meals through their collaboration with Company Shop; and
  • The first online food map for central London created by Plan Zheroes.

WRAP will also launch a dedicated Redistribution Module this year as part of its “Your Workplace Without Waste” staff engagement programme. This is aimed at employees working in the food & drink manufacturing and retail sector, and will offer training to businesses on increasing or improving redistribution models within their own operations. For the hospitality and food service sector, Courtauld 2025 is developing materials and insights to cascade new best practice to the sector. A new campaign is being developed for the whole sector, which will be piloted across 10 sites early in 2017.

The Courtauld 2025 Redistribution Working Group will continue to identify ways to overcome barriers to redistribution, share best practice and develop new guidance and tools. 

WRAP is also working to increase the signatory base of Courtauld 2025, which will increase the impact of the ambition over the coming years. WRAP will monitor and report food redistributed by Courtauld 2025 signatories and at a national level - with charitable and commercial routes to be reported separately for the first time - to enable progress to be measured.

Notes to editor 

*Courtauld Commitment 2025 Signatories

Redistribution increased both under WRAP’s Courtauld Commitment 3, and Hospitality and Food Service voluntary agreements. Under Courtauld 3 a significant increase in the amount of surplus food and drink redistributed for human consumption occurred, with a total of 18,000 tonnes being redistributed in 2015. Signatories to the HaFSA agreement doubled redistribution to 760 tonnes under their voluntary agreement. 

The Courtauld Commitment 2025 is an ambitious ten-year commitment creating partnerships across the entire food supply chain including hospitality and food service sector, retailers, food & drink manufacturers, farmers and local authorities. Its aims to cut waste and greenhouse gas emissions associated with food and drink in the UK by at least one-fifth per capita in ten years, and reduce the impact of water use, with cumulative savings of around £20 billion.

First established in 2000, WRAP is a not for profit organisation and registered charity whose vision is a world where resources are used sustainably. WRAP works with governments, businesses and communities to deliver practical solutions to improve resource efficiency.

Our mission is to accelerate the move to a sustainable resource-efficient economy through: 

a. re-inventing how we design, produce and sell products,

b. re-thinking how we use and consume products, and

c. re-defining what is possible through re-use and recycling.