Families invited to take part in zero food waste challenge

Families fed up of throwing away food are being invited to take part in a national campaign to tackle waste and help save money.

Households are being asked to register their interest in the ‘Zero Waste Kitchen Challenge’, which is part of the national ‘Waste Less, Save More’ campaign run by Sainsbury’s and delivered by Durham County Council in partnership with Durham University, REfUSE and The County Durham Food Partnership.

The ten chosen families will be given £50 worth of vouchers to buy kitchen products such as blenders and storage devices which they can use to help them during the challenge.

They will then be asked to think up innovative ways to reduce waste and to monitor how much they throw away.

As part of the challenge, participants will receive an initial visit from a member of staff from the council’s strategic waste management team to discuss current food habits and which tools might be most useful to their daily lives.

Support will be provided throughout and families will also be given a handbook full of top tools and tips as well as a free cooking workshop.

Upon completion of the challenge, which will last for four weeks, participants will be given an additional £20 Sainsbury’s voucher to spend in store.

To register interest for the challenge, email wasteaware@durham.gov.uk by Sunday, 4 February 2018.

Other activities are also taking place over the next 12 months to encourage positive behavioural change towards food waste.

Local businesses will be offered the opportunity to donate any unwanted food to local community projects, while three community fridges will also be set up where people can donate their leftovers to be used by others.

Vicki Burrell, waste strategy team manager at Durham County Council, said: “Every year, UK households throw away 15 million tonnes of food and drink, nearly half of which could have been eaten.

“Activities such as the Kitchen Waste Challenge are a great way to raise awareness of the issue and we would encourage everyone to visit our website for top tips on how to reduce waste and save themselves money.”

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