British homes are most likely to bin bread, salad leaves and bananas – according to study

A poll of 2,000 adults found 81 per cent throw away uneaten items at least once a week - with milk, cucumber and potatoes among the most common weekly leftovers.

Nearly four in 10 (37 per cent) forget about things until they go off while 21 per cent struggle to use up all the contents from the likes of multi-packs.

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And while 67 per cent struggle to turn leftovers into a tasty meal, 39 per cent bin things simply because they’re bored of eating them in batch.

Despite this, 98 per cent care about food waste and 27 per cent would love to be a zero-food waste household but don't know how.

Fighting food waste

The research was commissioned by Boursin, which has partnered with MasterChef 2018 winner, Kenny Tutt, and FoodCycle to inspire creativity in the kitchen in an effort to help combat food waste food.

A video shows the food kitchen being taken over by the celebrity chef to help inspire its volunteers, who face the weekly challenge of serving up delicious, nutritious and affordable meals to visitors made purely from food that would otherwise go to waste.

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The menu included a variety of dishes including spaghetti marinara frittata, roasted pumpkin mac n cheese, and vegan tacos.

A spokesperson for Boursin said: "People are increasingly committed to combatting food waste, but inspiration can be a real barrier to achieving this.

“That’s why we’re delighted to partner with FoodCycle and Kenny Tutt to try and fight food waste while also raising awareness and funds for a great cause and a community service ever-growing in demand against the current economic backdrop.”

Getting creative with leftovers

The study also found a quarter of those who waste food will throw things away twice a week, amounting to 1.1kg or an estimated £26.97 per month.

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Despite food caddies being widely available, 37 per cent still use the normal bin to dispose of unwanted leftovers.

However, 47 per cent feel guilty for wasting so much food, with saving money (63 per cent) and caring for the environment (60 per cent) the biggest drivers for change.

The study, conducted via OnePoll, also found 20 is the average age for Brits to become most concerned about food wastage, with 81 per cent being raised to never waste what they eat.

However, a fifth of those polled claimed their household rarely eats leftovers, as 79 per cent will adjust how much they cook based on the number of people eating.

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And four in 10 are happy to eat food that has gone past its sell by date, with three days considered the acceptable time to keep it.

A third are keen to turn leftover food and ingredients into meals as 24 per cent are aware of the direct impact it has on global warming and climate change.


Building resilient communities

Mary McGrath MBE, CEO at FoodCycle, said: “Last year, we managed to save 191 tonnes of food from going to waste, all of which was transformed into tasty meals and served at FoodCycle Projects across the country.

"Our community meals are open to anyone that needs them and with bills continuing to rise, our services are needed more than ever.

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"We work with supermarkets, small independent grocery stores and food distribution charities to source perfectly edible surplus food in a safe and responsible way.

"Our aim is to strengthen and build resilient communities by bringing people together to share healthy, delicious meals, so inspiration and effective, smart ingredients are intrinsic to our service.

"It’s been great to work with Kenny and Boursin on some new hearty dishes that our volunteers have loved creating and our guests have enjoyed eating.”

The top 20 foods wasted in Britain

  1. Bread
  2. Bag of salad leaves – rocket, watercress etc.
  3. Bananas
  4. Milk
  5. Lettuce
  6. Strawberries
  7. Cucumber
  8. Potatoes
  9. Tomatoes
  10. Eggs
  11. Carrots
  12. Mushrooms
  13. Ham
  14. Apples
  15. Cheese
  16. Onions
  17. Chicken
  18. Cooked pasta
  19. Oranges
  20. Cream
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