A new report into food waste in the UK bakery sector has found that the issue of food waste is lowering employee morale. Over a third (38%) of bakery employees have said their team morale is impacted by how much food their business wastes.
Commissioned by Too Good To Go, the surplus food app, the report also revealed that while food waste is a visible issue, action to reduce it is not on the menu. Nine out of ten of those who work in bakeries are aware of how much food their bakery business wastes each day. However, over two thirds (71%) of employees state their workplace does not have a stock management system in place to reduce food waste.
When looking at the main reasons for food waste in bakeries, the top reason is strict health and safety guidelines, with over a third (35%) of bakery employees selecting it as one of the main causes. Short shelf life of products is the second highest reason for food waste, affecting a third (33%) of bakeries, while the weather impacting demand is the third highest cause, impacting just under a third (31%) of businesses.
The report found that ready-made sandwiches are the most likely item to be wasted by bakeries, with over a quarter (28%) of those working in the sector selecting them as the type of bakery product most likely to be wasted at their business. The reason for this seems clear. An accompanying consumer survey found that ready-made sandwiches are the nation’s least favourite item to purchase from their local bakery, with only 15% purchasing them frequently.
Paschalis Loucaides, UK Managing Director, Too Good To Go, said: “Our research found that employees care deeply about wasting food. This is not surprising considering the hours of time and energy that go into creating perfect pastries, crusty loaves and delicious cupcakes.
“If practices continue as they are, the team and resource costs of throwing away food will take their toll on bakery businesses. But by introducing training programmes, adopting new tools, implementing technology solutions and building them into operations guidelines, the bakery sector can rise to the challenge and lead the way in reducing our nation’s food waste footprint.”
To view and download the full report, click here.
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Editor, International Bakery
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