Farming

The issues

WRAP's research has highlighted the significant financial, environmental and efficiency benefits of tackling food waste in primary production. For two key crops assessed, strawberries and lettuce, it was estimated that £30 million ended up as waste in the UK.

Food might be wasted in primary production for a range of reasons such as weather damage, pest damage, over production, reduced orders and quality requirements.

What is the evidence?

WRAP is working with researchers, industry and governments to improve the evidence base for food waste in primary production through the Courtauld Commitment 2025.

Pilot research into the strawberry and lettuce sectors

The research highlights the benefits of tackling food waste in primary production. For the two sectors assessed, WRAP estimated that £30 million ended up as waste in the UK, in 2015. This resulted from a complex set of factors, with forecasting and product specifications, and pest and disease damage, being cited most frequently.

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What is being done?

Pioneering projects are now underway within Courtauld 2025 in response to this evidence, targetting improvements in business performance and resource efficiency, whilst combatting food waste. These whole supply chain projects involve farmers and growers, fresh produce, hospitality & food service and retail companies. The focus is on priority crops including soft fruit, potatoes, root vegetables and salad.

WRAP plans to build on the evidence for strawberries and lettuces to encompass other sectors. We are working with a broad group of industry representatives from across the UK to identify how this can be best achieved.

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Our resources

By working with WRAP your organisation can improve processes, find new techniques and work toward implementing best practice in your supply chain.

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