100% of Woolworths supermarkets now claim to be with an active food waste diversion partner.

Woolworths eliminates food waste from its supermarkets

In a bid to tackle the $20 billion food waste problem in Australia and its commitment to reduce food waste from going to landfill, Woolworths has announced that 100% of its supermarkets now have an active food waste diversion program in place.
From rescuing surplus fresh food and distributing it to hunger relief charity partners, donating stock feed to farmers or sending it for commercial organic composting, all Woolworths supermarkets nationwide now have at least one active food waste diversion partner in place.
With these programs in place,  Woolworths has recorded an average year-on-year reduction of 8 per cent in food waste sent to landfill over the past three years.
Woolworths head of sustainability Adrian Cullen said: “Food is meant to be eaten, not thrown – which is why together with our customers, our farmers and our community partners, we’re working to keep good food out of landfill.
“This is not a new journey for us – we’ve been working hard at this for the last decade and we are excited to hit a milestone ahead of World Environment Day that 100% of our stores now with a food waste diversion program in place.
“We heavily invested in our team members to ensure that they have the education, training, resources and equipment to better identify and divert surplus food that can no longer be sold away from landfill and toward the most beneficial stream – be it food rescue for hunger relief, farmer donations for animal feed or commercial composting.”
In the last year, Woolworths has diverted from landfill over 55,000 tonnes of food and enabled over 10 million meals to be delivered to Australians in need across the country.
Adrian Cullen said; “Working with our partners OzHarvest, Foodbank and Fareshare to feed Australian’s who would otherwise go hungry is our number one priority when it comes to diverting food from our stores,
“We then work with local farmers so that surplus food, which cannot go to hunger relief, is used as stock feed for animals or for on-farm composting. This helps us further reduce and re-purpose bakery and produce waste.”
To date over 750 farmers and community groups from around the country have joined the Woolworths Stock Feed for Farmers program and last year Australian farmers received more than 32,000 tonnes of surplus food from Woolworths that is no longer fit for human consumption.
Owner of Tasmania Zoo Rochelle Penney has been part of the Woolworths Stock Feed for Farmers program since the Zoo opened its doors 15 years ago.
Ms Penney said: “Our team collects several bins of unsold surplus fruit, vegetables and bakery products that are no longer suitable for sale, every day from our local Woolworths stores to supplement feed for our animals.
“With over 100 different species of animals, all with variable nutritional needs, the support we receive from Woolies through the Stock Feed for Farmers program is invaluable.
“The program is enriching the lives of our animals and providing them the experience to taste a wide variety of produce.
“Importantly, the savings we make through the program enable us to continue our important conservation and education work which includes breeding programs and caring for a number of critically endangered native and exotic species.”

GS1 partners with Foodbank to help address hunger in Aus

GS1 Australia has formed a partnership with Foodbank aiming to help tackle Australia’s food insecurity crisis through the GS1 Australia Recall portal, with Foodbank subscribing to receive timely product recall and withdrawal notices.
Foodbank, Australia’s largest food relief organisation, can now receive communication from manufacturers and suppliers about a product recall or withdrawal using the Recall service – an online portal to significantly streamline and improve the product recall and withdrawal process.
GS1 Australia’s head of supply chain improvement services Peter Chambers said: “GS1 Australia’s Recall portal now offers Foodbank the functionality to manage product recalls and remove the items from the Foodbank distribution system accurately and effectively. Food safety today is high on the menu with a need for an unequivocal standard practice across the entire food sector. Issuing a recall or withdrawal notification using Recall is simple, fast, and inexpensive.”
General manager national supply chain at Foodbank Australia Michael Davidson said: “Subscribing to Recall now gives us the reassurance that we will immediately be notified by our suppliers in the event of a food item being recalled or withdrawn from the supply chain. It also gives manufacturers and suppliers the opportunity to donate product withdrawals as an alternative to that product going into landfill. Instead, we will re-direct it across our national network of front-line charities to provide food and grocery items to vulnerable Australians who are doing it tough.”
Foodbank works collaboratively with the entire Australian food and retail sector and throughout the supply chain to source and distribute food to front line charities around the country.
The organisation receives donations of stock that is out of specification, close to expiry, surplus to requirement, or has incorrect, or faulty packaging. As long as the products are safe for human consumption and not part of a product recall, then Foodbank can gratefully accept them.
“We rely on food donations from a variety of suppliers including farmers, manufacturers, distributors, and retailers to help us reach the 3.6 million Australians who are suffering with food insecurity each year. With our vision being an Australia free from hunger and food waste, we are encouraging all suppliers that kindly donate surplus product to also notify us about a product withdrawal as soon as possible,” added Mr Davidson.
“GS1 Australia is excited that Foodbank has selected Recall, the first online recall portal to be certified by HACCP, to manage a recall or withdrawal of a food item that has been donated to them for the safety of the consumer,” said Mr Chambers.
For more information about Recall call 1300 227 263 or email recall@gs1au.org.
 

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