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Local celebrities sign up to banish food waste

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Friday 22 November 2013

FOUR local celebrities are backing a local campaign that aims to help islanders save money by wasting less food.

Olympic athlete Lee Merrien, cider maker James Meller and restaurateurs Tony Leck and Dave Matheson have become the faces of the new 'Love Food Hate Waste' advertising campaign.

It aims to reduce the 4,500 tonnes of food waste local households currently throw away each year. It is estimated more than half of this could have been eaten, instead of ending up in landfill.

But that's not all. The average Guernsey family spends around £400 on food each month. Cutting waste and planning meals carefully could help them save as much as £600 a year.

Deputy Public Services Minister, Deputy Scott Ogier said acknowledging the issue was the first step.

"Our shopping habits have changed enormously compared to previous generations and many of us are possibly not as adept as our mums were at rustling up a tasty dish from leftovers.  So we've basically become accustomed to food going into the bin, and not appreciating exactly how much that is costing us.  However when you add up what the average household throws out each year, the waste is staggering.  And so too are the saving."

Public Services' Recycling Officer Tina Norman-Ross said having such high profile local faces backing the campaign will hopefully help spread the message. Once people are made aware of the issue, there is a plenty of advice available.

"We have a dedicated website full of handy tips to reduce food waste, from planning meals and tasty recipes to shopping smarter. However we will also be using Facebook and Twitter so that islanders can share their own ideas and we really want to hear from people."

The four 'faces' will not just feature in advertising, they also plan to become involved in the campaign sharing some recipes and tips of their own.

Mr Merrien, one of Guernsey's most well-known sportsmen, believes that diet is an important part of staying healthy and that a proper diet shouldn't waste food.

"Meal planning is very important. Getting portion sizes right and using a variety of seasonal foods keeps the body working properly, which is vital to any athlete. Planning meals carefully also cuts down on food that is wasted."

The Love Food Hate Waste website includes tips for food storage, such as the best packaging to keep food fresher for longer, and advice for sensible shopping and portion planning. 

Red Grill House owner Mr Matheson features in a 'steak lovers hate waste' poster, complete with horns. He said although it was fun to do, it had an important message.

"In our restaurant the real heroes are the people who rear the fantastic breeds that we serve and tend the vines which make the great wine that we offer. The work and passion that goes in to this process makes our job much easier. To waste any of this produce would be unthinkable for us here at Red."

Mrs Norman-Ross said:

"Fruit and vegetables are the food that is wasted the most, which is crazy when you think about all the things you can make with them. It is often a result of overbuying or storing them incorrectly. Our new campaign will give islanders the help they need to cut back on the amount of food that they waste and help them save money."

-ENDS-

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