Stat of the day: 7.2 million tonnes

The amount of food and drink binned every year by UK households. It's about a tonne less than we were throwing away three years ago: who knew that the financial crisis could have environmental benefits?

by Rebecca Burn-Callander
Last Updated: 09 Oct 2013

Latest figures from the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP - great acronym) show that we're actually less wasteful than we were a few years ago.

Why? Because we're poorer.

Falling household incomes are forcing people to eat their leftovers (boo hoo) and use all of the groceries they buy (shock horror) resulting in a one tonne saving on the waste of yesteryear. With food prices rising a whopping 20% in five years, people simply can't afford to indulge their Henry VIII-style, hurl-unfinished-drumstick-over-shoulder tendencies any more.

Nevertheless, we're still a nation of wasters. WRAP reckons that around two-thrids of the rubbish we throw away could be recycled or avoided completely. That's around £12bn-worth of unnecessary waste.

So, the next time you're thinking of binning that apple because it's got a small bruise, nosh it down instead. Not only is it better for the environment - you'll be quids in.

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