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Survey Reveals: Families Squander Nearly £500 Annually through Food Waste

Person throwing garbage into trash bin

UK FAMILIES waste almost £500 a year throwing away food, a recent survey has found. Every month, a family of four throws away food worth over £40 – and the majority of this food could still have been eaten when discarded. 

The Waste Managed survey, found that the value of food wasted by UK households is estimated to be around £14 billion each year.  

As supermarkets face compulsory laws banning plastic packaging to further reduce food waste, customers must find other ways to prolong the shelf life of their fruit and vegetables.  

Now an innovative kitchen solution can help them do just that. The Ecoloc is a new kitchen product that uses unique UV technology to extend shelf life of food by up to 300% . 

Made to fit all IKEA food containers in the 365+ series, the Ecoloc product illuminates food through the adapted lid. Depending on how the food has been handled and its condition when placed in the container, using the bactericidal light can extend shelf life of bread by up to 200% and tomatoes by up to 300%.   

Within the EU, households account for over 50% of all food waste, discarding over 31 million tons of food annually. In the UK, over 60 per cent of food that’s thrown away could have been consumed if it had been stored properly.

The UN’s Agenda 2030 aims to halve global food waste per person at retail and consumer levels and decrease food waste throughout the supply chain, including post-harvest losses. Without food waste, an additional three billion people could be free from hunger.   

Global food waste expert, Åsa Sandberg says: “Food containers are used in homes around the world.

With innovations like EcoLoc, these containers become a tool against food waste which can also help us save money too. With an increasingly challenging personal economy, this can make a significant difference in our everyday life.” 
Purefize’s Chief Product Officer, Johan Tingsborg adds: “From salting and drying food, to canning, refrigeration, and vacuum packing, we have always tried to innovate to find ways to extend food shelf life.

Now, we’re taking the next step with EcoLoc, making it easier for all households to reduce the amount of food we throw away.”  

Global food waste expert, Åsa Sandberg also offers her quick tips on how to extend the shelf life of food and save money:  

Vacuum and bacteria-killing UV light 

Vacuum packing can extend the shelf life of food. Now, there’s also a new product available called EcoLoc, which uses bacteria-killing UV light to prolong the shelf life of food by up to 300%. EcoLoc safely extends the shelf life of your food by eliminating the microorganisms responsible for food breakdown. 

Use your senses 

Best-before dates don’t necessarily mean the food must be thrown away after this date; rather that the quality of the food might start to deteriorate. Use your senses like smell, taste, and sight to determine if it’s still edible. 

Freeze food 

It sounds simple, but if you have a surplus of any item or know you won’t use a product for an extended period, freeze it, and it will last longer. 

Rinse your berries in vinegar! 

By rinsing your berries with three parts water and one part vinegar and then storing them in a sealed container, they last longer. You won’t taste the vinegar once it’s rinsed off. 

Make snacks from potato peels 

After peeling potatoes, most people throw away the skins. You can use these to make your own crisps, by seasoning and baking them in the oven. 

Avoid storing eggs in the fridge door 

Eggs are best kept further inside the fridge. If you place them in the door, like many do, they are exposed to greater temperature variations. By moving them further inside, they stay fresh for longer. 

Save leftover sauce 

Do you often have leftover sauce after dinner? Pour the sauce into ice cube trays and freeze. You’ll then have suitably sized portions that you can later heat in a pot for your next meal. 

Move older food items to the front 

When you get new groceries, make it a rule to put them further back in the fridge or behind a perishable that’s already there. This way, you won’t use the new item until you’ve finished the old one. 

Don’t throw away your brown bananas 

Bananas quickly turn brown, but don’t discard them. They’re perfect for blending into a smoothie with yogurt or making banana bread.  


There are many apps that gather offers on food items. Check which items are on sale before going to the store.