Wrap is calling on leading wholesalers to do more to tackle food waste after identifying a lack of engagement from the sector.
The government-funded agency has so far signed up 187 food businesses to its Food Waste Reduction Roadmap that launched in September 2018, but just five are wholesalers: Booker, Brakes, Bidfood, Apetito and Castell Howell Foods.
“An area where membership is lower is wholesale and distribution,” said Wrap business engagement specialist Ashley Robb.
“There are many reasons why wholesalers and distributors will benefit through the Roadmap, not least with the Resources & Waste Strategy setting out plans to consult on legislation for reporting food waste by UK businesses.”
The Roadmap, which was developed by Wrap and IGD, provides free support and resources for businesses to use in order to reduce food waste through the supply chain.
“Food production, storage and distribution have an unavoidable impact on the environment. However, it is important to note that wholesale makes up a very small proportion of the 10 million tonnes of food and drink wasted in the post-farmgate food chain each year,” said Federation of Wholesale Distributors CEO James Bielby.
“However, with food waste reporting likely to be mandatory in the near future, this Roadmap gives clear guidance to the wholesale sector and encourages best practice. The Roadmap is challenging enough to impact significantly on food waste, without placing unnecessary regulatory burden on the wholesale sector.
“We would also support the introduction of government incentives to ensure that it is cheaper for food businesses to redistribute food rather than to throw it away.”