In 2009, WRAP developed an econometric model which examines the interplay between: macroeconomic factors, such as household incomes and food prices; household awareness of food waste; and the weight of food purchased and wasted by households.
- 40% of the observed reduction in household food waste between 2007 and 2010 is attributable to an increase in food waste reduction activity (such as national and local communications and other consumer engagement, the provision of tools and advice etc.). Around 35% of the reduction is attributable to the impact of higher real food prices while the relative decrease in incomes contributed to a lesser extent to the reduction (ca 5%).
- By 2011, the reduction in food purchases implied by the increase in food waste reduction activity had resulted in an annual saving of £1.9 billion for UK households. Consumers chose to spend around half of this saving in ‘trading up’ to higher value foods. Therefore, the research supports the earlier finding that as consumers avoid food waste, many change their purchasing behaviour and buy smaller quantities of higher price food.
Explore the research
Subsequent to updating the econometric model, WRAP published new research that revealed a 1.3 million tonne reduction in household food waste between 2007 and 2012 (see www.wrap.org.uk/household-food-waste). Given the timing of the two pieces of research, this report details analysis using the 2010 data only.