Asda Chairman discusses shoppers' changing habits
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Asda is following in the footsteps of other supermarkets, including Tesco, Marks and Spencer, and Waitrose, as it has decided to remove best before dates from some of its products. The change will be implemented from Wednesday, September 1.
As food prices continue to rise, Britons are finding ways to make their food last fresher for longer.
Supermarkets are also helping out by removing best before dates from products which are fine to eat for days after their official best before date.
Best before dates are put on products as a precaution – for people who take the date literally, the removal of it will help them keep their food for longer.
It is advised by the Food Standards Agency to eat food past its sell by date if there is no mould growing on it.
If there is no mould and it doesn’t smell, a product is fine to eat.
The removal of best before dates will therefore help prevent food waste.
Asda has warned its customers it will be getting rid of best before dates on 250 of its products.
These products are fresh fruit and vegetables, including citrus fruits, potatoes, carrots, and cauliflower.
The dates will be replaced by a new code which will be used by store staff to ensure quality and freshness, Asda said.
The retailer will also provide guidance online and on packaging to help customers store and prepare fresh food.
There will be information on how to reduce food waste too.
The news comes after the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) stated that best before dates on fruit and vegetables are unnecessary and contribute to climate change.
WRAP figures suggested that the average British family throws away £60 worth of food and drink every month.
Andy Cockshaw, Asda’s head of technical, said: “Reducing food waste in our business and in customers’ homes is a priority and we are always looking at different ways to achieve this.
“We know for customers this has become more important than ever in the current climate as many families are struggling with the cost-of-living crisis and are looking to make savings wherever they can.”
Catherine David, director of collaboration and change at WRAP, added: “We are delighted by this development from Asda to help tackle food waste in our homes.
“Our research has shown that date labels on fruit and veg are unnecessary.
“Getting rid of them can prevent the equivalent of seven million shopping baskets’ worth from our household bins.
“The influence of no date label or the right date label on what we use and what we throw away is huge.
“More supermarkets need to get ahead on food waste by axing date labels from fresh produce, allowing people to use their own judgement.”
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