OLIO is a new free app which enables people to reduce food waste by sharing information about surplus food and other items locally.
The app allows users to upload a list of the food they have available and match it to local people, businesses or charities that want to take it.
After Food Waste Prevention Week in January, the number of users of the app in Orkney increased by over 500%.
Mary Rutter,of Orkney Zerowaste said:
“At a recent food drive that we held after Food Waste Prevention Week, Orkney residents shared an astonishing 188kg of edible food.
“All of that useable food was saved from the landfill or incinerator and redistributed back into family kitchens.”
Food redistribution has many benefits for companies, charities and individuals – from providing food to those that can use it, to reducing the cost of food storage and waste disposal.
Those that missed Food Waste Prevention Week, who want to find out more about using food redistribution to reduce waste and help those in need, can download the free ‘Surplus Food Redistribution Guide’ from the Zero Waste Scotland website.
Seumas Campbell from NorthLink Ferries who attended the event said:
“It helped us to fill in some blanks in our food waste procedures that we are now implementing across our business.”
Food Waste Prevention week was run by Zero Waste Scotland’s Resource Efficient Scotland programme. It was funded by the Scottish Government and European Regional Development Fund and supported by Orkney Islands Council, Orkney Zero Waste and Orkney Food & Drink.
Since Zero Waste Scotland’s Resource Efficient Scotland programme launched in 2013, it has worked with organisations in Orkney to identify over £1.3M savings worth of life time savings simply reducing waste and cutting energy and water bills. (1)
Iain Gulland, Chief Executive, Zero Waste Scotland, said:
“We are delighted to have received such a positive response from local businesses in Orkney following Food Waste Prevention Week. Food waste can be costly for businesses, but with research suggesting that up to 75% of this could be avoided, handling food more efficiently can unlock big savings.
“We are also excited to see so many Orcadians taking the opportunity to redistribute surplus, edible food to those who can use it. Using the OLIO app is a great way of linking those that can donate surplus food with those that have a need for it.”
Food Waste Prevention Week was part of Zero Waste Scotland’s Resource Efficient Circular Economy Accelerator Programme, which will invest £6 million in the Highlands and Islands in resource efficiency projects until December 2019, thanks to ERDF support.
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The Orkney News has a recipe section where you can find affordable healthy meals and ideas for using up left overs.